Fernando Botero, 1932 -
Bronze BA 1/2
245 x 310 x 150 cm
The bird is traditionally associated with peace and serenity. This three-dimensional Bird by Botero also signifies the joy of living and the power of optimism.
The UOB believes that so long as there is peace and optimism among its people, Singapore will continue to grow and prosper.
Botero's sculpture allows one the pleasure of caressing reality. There is a sensual complicity that the artist had with his creation which is shared with the public.
Another Bird is found outside the airport in Florence, Italy. The works are cast in Tuscany. Botero donated a similar bird to the city of Medellin, Colombia, his birthplace, in the mid 1990s, as a gesture to rebuilding the city devastated by drug-related violence. The sculpture was bombed, with 26 casualties. (Source: Penelope Richardson website).
From the Miami Herald, May 8, 2000
"On June 11, 1995, a huge bomb exploded in an open-air park in Medellin. It was hidden at the feet of his [Botero's] outdoor sculpture, The Bird, and killed 23 people and wounded 200 others.
'This was so completely stupid,' Botero said. 'When I learned of it, I said leave the [damaged sculpture] there, as a monument to stupidity.'
In January, Botero returned to Medellin to unveil a second sculpture, The Bird of Peace, placed a few yards south of the mangled, blast-damaged original sculpture. 'I want this to remain as a monument to violence and the peace,'' he said.