Benevolent Botero Bounty Brings Beauty

Mona Lisa's childhood picture

Mona Lisa‘s childhood picture

The Museo de Antioquia is one cultural attraction to have received many blessings. This was only the second museum created in Colombia. Sitting primly on Botero Plaza it is only a short walking distance from the Berrío Park metro station. One Sunday, we tried getting in, but due to shortened Sunday hours, we passed it by for another time. That time has arrived.

Knowing it is an art museum, what we were not aware of is that it is a Botero showcase. It easily matches the quality and quantity of the Museo de Botero in Bogota.

When one enters the museum, the murals painted by Pedro Nel Gómez fill the wall at the stop of thePedro Nel Gómez staircase. Purchasing our tickets, the seller who was rather stone-faced advised us that starting on the third floor and work down from there was the best route. Later, I discovered this is routine, even written in other travel articles.

The third floor is all Botero’s work. What needs to be clearly stated is that Botero donated all the work on display. It all started when the museum requested to purchase a piece of his work. Rather than sell it, Botero donated the work. Botero followed this one piece with additional and multiple bulk collections of his work. Taken by surprise at these gifts, the museum was forced to relocate in order to accommodate the gifts. They moved into their current home in 2000.

After stuffing ourselves with the collection on the third floor, we found still more Botero’s work on Colombia - Medellin January 2016 339the second, but not as many. One entire hall overflows with works created by international artists; most of it is modern art. Botero donated every piece on display. The man is beyond generous.

Other rooms offer exhibits featuring religious Colombia - Medellin January 2016 332and colonial art and a temporary exhibit that was beyond our comprehension. Flashing lights and projected images of abstract lines do nothing for us.

Just inside the doors, we missed this coming in. There is an old weapon that someone transformed into a guitar.Colombia - Medellin January 2016 371

Colombia - Medellin January 2016 372Leaving the museum, we retraced some of the walking tour we had taken. Ron remembered a bakery that specialized in the Colombian black wedding cake. When we found the bakery, it did not have Sunday hours. Too bad, but we did find the cake at another restaurant. It was good, but maybe not as good as the specialty bakery.

Before returning to the apartment, we went once more to Parque San Antonio. We wanted pictures of the bombed bird statue. Previously, written in a prior post here is a quote from Colombia Reports “On June 10, 1995 an alleged FARC bomb was detonated under the sculpture Colombia - Medellin January 2016 382during a concert, killing 23 people and injuring dozens more. In 2000, Botero had an identical sculpture placed in the park as a “homage to stupidity,” a symbol of peace, and a memorial to the victims.”

We did accomplish our 10,000 steps goal and surpassed it by 1,077 more.

After completing my Ed.D., the frustration of finding a teaching position where I was willing to live, led to Ron and I leaving the country. We intended to travel for a year before settling somewhere in MA or RI. We left the US without any credit card debt, no car payments and our house mortgage paid by renters. We had $10,000 in the bank to make our way through a year.