Discover Colombian artists working today. A good place to begin your discovery is with the work of Santiago Lozano. Santiago’s abstract mixed media art explores the process of creating and the inevitability of imperfection. A large element of Santiago’s work’s identity lies in its texture, with the surface pattern creating captivating works of art.
Medellin-based artist Alexander Bermudez creates large scale Expressionist portraits with a refined palette of subdued colours. Distorting his figures and fragmenting his images, Alexander’s paintings make for dramatic and at times sinister reflections of his female subjects. Combining elements of immense detail with washes of block tones, Alexander’s paintings reveal hidden elements of the human psyche. Landscape painter Dairo Vargas echoes the vivid and distinctive mood of Alexander Bermudez’s paintings. Capturing atmospheric times of day, Oriad also uses light to impart an ephemeral tone to his art.
The history of Colombian art stems back thousands of years, and can be tracked as far as 3100 BC. Ceramic art is believed to have been produced in Colombia before anywhere else in the Americas. From this point on, decoration and craft have been central components of Colombian culture, from stone cutting and jewellery making to intricate gold work.
The pursuit of gold was one of the driving forces that led the Spanish to Colombia, and with the invasion of the Spanish, Colombian art changed drastically. From the dominance of the Baroque style in the 17th century, to modern art movements, Colombia has forged its own artistic identity. Today, Bogota is hailed as one of the leading cultural cities in South America. The city’s many art galleries, combined with its famed art fair, ArtBo have cemented the country’s capital as a hotspot for contemporary art.
Colombian artists such as Fernando Botero and Oscar Murillo are leading the country’s cultural Renaissance, as well as the larger global contemporary art scene. Joined by the likes of Antonio Caro, Gabriel Sierra and Pedro Ruiz, Colombian artists are emerging in some of the world’s most prestigious galleries, from the Guggenheim, to the Saatchi Gallery, to Tate Modern.