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    Sale 12166

    Latin American Art

    25 - 26 May 2016, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 36

    Fernando Botero (b. 1932)

    Seated Woman

    Price Realised  


    Fernando Botero (b. 1932)
    Seated Woman
    signed and numbered 'Botero, 3/3' and stamped with the foundry mark 'Fonderia Mariani Pietrasanta Italy' (on the base)
    84 x 76 x 77 1/2 in. (213.4 x 193 x 196.9 cm.)
    Conceived in 2002; Cast in 2004.
    Edition three of three.

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    The overall monumentality and sheer massiveness of Fernando Botero's rotund figures is perhaps nowhere more evident and effective than in his sculptural works. For it is here that the flatness of his pictorial surfaces gives way to a sense of mass and form that harks back to the artist's study of the Renaissance masters-Giotto, Michaelangelo, Raphael, and Uccello. But seemingly unsatisfied by the lessons learned from those preeminent forerunners, Botero exaggerates the corpulence and overall volume of his sculptural figures to create a reality that far surpasses representational conventions or any desire to render a 'truth' grounded in 'reality.' Yet Botero's Amazonian figures, like his Seated Woman are indeed grounded, if not by their ability to convey a 'truthful' representation, then surely by their disproportionate scale and voluminous presence. And, while Botero is quick to dismiss his subject matter as a mere vehicle for the study and exploration of plasticity and form, it is nearly impossible to ignore the overwhelming presence of the female form throughout the artist's prodigious career or to understate its signifying potential given its prevalence and status in the history of art and image making. Indeed it is challenging to remain neutral when approaching one of Botero's monumental ladies who appear to be literally and figuratively 'ripe' with meaning. Far from being mere objects of affection or desire, Botero's women do not quietly occupy space but rather they demand it. They return our gaze and assert their independence and sexuality while reveling in their voluptuousness. And, while the artist's women reflect a sense of continuity and lineage within the history of art, here as is true elsewhere, the conventions and solutions offered by those antecedents are simply a starting point. The demure sitter's pose, at once concealing and revealing her assets, simultaneously asserts and eschews tradition and social mores while challenging more pervasive and socially acceptable representations of beauty and female 'perfection.'


    Acquired from the artist.
    Anon. sale, Sotheby's Derbyshire, United Kingdom, Monumental Sculpture at Chatsworth, Private Selling Exhibition, April 2005 (illustrated in color).
    Acquired from the above by the present owner.

    Saleroom Notice

    Please note this lot is offered without a reserve.

    Pre-Lot Text



    Exhibition catalogue, Botero a Venezia, Venice, Artmedia, 2003, p. 116-117 (another edition illustrated in color.)
    Exhibition catalogue, Botero at Ebisu, Yebisu Garden Palace, Tokyo, 2004 (another edition illustrated).
    Exhibition catalogue, Botero, Works 1994-2007, Milan, Palazzo Reale, Skira editore, 2007, p. 183, no. 6 (another edition illustrated in color).
    Exhibition catalogue, Botero: Una celebración, Mexico City, Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes, 2012, p. 294-295 (another edition illustrated in color).