Posts Tagged ‘Miguel de la Espriella’

Well, I have been away from Bogota for a while due to traveling, work etc… but since I am back and we are in the full throws of ArtBo 2009 I thought it would be interesting (and a bit of fun!) to do a quick analysis of which Colombian artists are being searched for on the web WORLDWIDE.°

I decided to include some rules!

1. The artist must be alive and kicking!

2. The artist obviously must be Colombian (though I made a couple of exceptions.*)

3. The artist must predominately live and work in Colombia.

(again I may have been lenient in one or two cases given that I do not have all the facts).

Also, all results were confirmed, excluding possible name misinterpretations by the search engine, by confirming that of the first 10 results on the first returned Google search page – AT LEAST ONE of the websites  (10%) had to relate directly or belong to the artist in question and not just a namesake. Some of the artists actually occupied ALL of the 10 results!

So, for all you fuddy-duddies that say “What about so and so . . . they should be in the list!” well, based on the above reason I have left out of contention artists such as Fernando Botero, Carlos Jacanamijoy, and Omar Rayo – all three being well known Colombians artists who have predominantly lived and worked outside of Colombia.

So here is the list of the TOP 21 MOST SEARCHED FOR Colombian artists  – according to Google keyword tool which bases its results on monthly averages over the last twelve months:

 List of Top 21 Colombian Artists

To a large extent many of the names could have been predicted since the art scene in Colombia is still taking baby-steps with respect to other Latin countries such as Argentina or Venezuela – and as such most searches relate to the staple diet of names: Beatriz González, Maripaz Jaramillo etc etc.

What did surprise me though was the HUGE difference in the number of people searching for Beatriz González (6,600) and John Castles  (260) who is a close contemporary of the fabled Bumangues artist. Also it was interesting to see artists Jorge Riveros, Miguel de la Espriella and Rafael Penagos in the list as their work is not so commonly reported on in the Colombian press and media (at least as far as I have seen).

However, it is very interesting to note that Doris Salcedo is neck and neck with Beatriz González. Also interesting to note the number of women in the list – about 30%! Not bad I think considering art is often still a male dominated profession.

I would predict that Doris Salcedo will race ahead within the next few years if her career continues as well as it has. And who knows, maybe some of the “dark horses” at the bottom of the pack will race up the list too. Or perhaps some colombian artists we haven´t considered now presenting at ArtBo 2009 will make the grade!

° I had to use worldwide data as local search volumes in Colombia were just too low for most of the artists. This most probably does add in a factor that distorts the results if there are several people with the same name being searched for – but is the best data that is available.

* It should be obvious that I made an exception with Armando Villegas who is Peruvian but who has lived and worked in Bogota for pretty much the whole of his career as has Jim Amaral who is from the USA.

A number of other well known artists were also searched for but the search volumes were either way too low or they did not result in a first page result. If you think there should be other artists in this list please leave a comment – maybe it will be worthwhile repeating the excercise in a years time!


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Buenos Aires

Over the past few days one of Argentina`s largest art fairs has been talking place. Artists from all over the world have presented their art there. And one of Colombias best known artist sons, Miguel de la Espriella (better known as “Noble”), used it as a platform to launch his latest series of works which form part of the Cosmic Vision series. His work was presented to the Argentine publci by the gallery ArgentinArtes of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Over 50,000 people visit the ArteClasica Fair every year and last year saw more than 400 artworks sold.

Here is a link to a spanish presentation in Arte Al Dia – one of the most popular international art magazines – that updates us on the event. Below is one of the works that was presented.

Arte Al Dia- ArteClasica 2008 – Buenos Aires, Argentina

Miguel de la Espriella - ArgentinArtes

Miguel de la Espriella "Noble" - ArgentinArtes Gallery - ArteClasica Art Fair - Argentina

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The Graciela Gómez Foundation has a new art exhibition in Bogotá right now. It started just a couple of days ago and has already been seen by thousands of people. The exhibition consists of sculptures and is being shown at present in the plaza of the World Trade Center in Bogota (Calle 100 #8). Over twenty artists are showing there work and the include the likes of Alicia Tafur, Miguel de la Espriella, Camilo Pinto y Hernando Sanchez.

The exhibition continues until the 18th of December and has the objective of raising funds through sales of the sculptures for the foundation.

The Graciela Gómez Foundation helps families on low incomes who have children with Downes Syndrome and helps pay for their child´s rehabilitation and education.

Below area few of the sculptures exhibited and a photo of the founder of the foundation: Graciela Gómez.

Word Trade Center (Left) - Bogota

World Trade Center (Right) - Bogota

Miguel de la Espriella (”Baile de Cumbia en Familia”) Patinated Bronze

Sculpture by Miguel de la Espriella

Hernando Sanchez - (Marble Resin Sculpture)

Scuplture by Hernando Sanchez

Camilo Pinto - Corset

Sculpture by Camilo Pinto

Message from the Foundation

Did you ever stop to think at some time about what you are? About your achievements, your family, about all the privileges and gifts that you possess, that you enjoy and that have never been of your choosing but were freely given to you?

Graciela Gómez - Alicia Tafur

Graciela Gómez – Beside a bronze sculpture created by Alicia Tafur.


Telephone: (+571) 274-2952

Fax: (+571) 633-3492

Email: gragomez@yahoo.com

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While surfing the net today I came across a strange link which associates Miguel de la Espriella (“Noble”), the Colombian painter with Gabriel Garcia Marquez and “Le Douanier” Rousseau.

What relationship could there possibly be between them you say?

Love in the Time of Cholera“. . . is the answer!

Now the first link may not seem so strange if you know that the artwork of “Noble” was initially derived from the Macondian world of Garcia Marquez and that “Gabo” actually knows of “Noble´s” artwork and has even written about it. Not so strange given that both are Colombians from the Colombian coast. But I am not so sure that many except perhaps the most perceptive would immediately associate “Noble” with Rousseau – but as you may see, the people at Awards Daily are a very investigative and perceptive bunch of souls.

Miguel de la Espriella and Henri Rousseau

Both Noble and Rousseau are self-taught artists and both started out professionally at a late age: Noble was in his mid to late thirties and Rousseau had probably already hit his forties.

Photo of Henri Rouuseau -

Henri Rousseau

Both artist´s work can be classified as naive, and both make great use of strong colors while at the same time also master darker tones with entwined claroscuros incorporated in their works.

Rousseau - Snake Charmer

The Snake Charmer

Tiger in a Tropical Storm

Tiger In A Tropical Storm (Surpised!)


Both are also well known by their nicknames. “Le Douanier” was given to Rousseau from the time when he worked as a toll booth operator in Paris. “Noble” was given to De la Espriella by his artist friends to reflect his kind and noble nature.

Although I do not believe Noble´s work to have been received with the same controversy as that of Rousseau´s, it does stimulate “position-taking” on the part of most people. I would say that it either generates either love or hate rather than indifference. Fortunately for the artist it would seem that most people love his work, which has allowed him to prosper professionally during the last quarter century.

In a conversation with the artist in 2001, I remember him saying to me: “I don´t mind if people talk negatively of the artwork I create – so long as they do talk about it!”

Miguel de la Espriella (”Noble”) at home

Miguel de la Espriella – “Noble”

Noble´s work is based on his own imaginary world while leaning on the literary work “100 Years of Solitude” written by Garcia Marquez. It has a strong claroscuro presentation and includes many invented flowers, birds (orioles), butterflies and dragonflies.

Dancing Orioles

“Dancing Orioles”

Over the last five years however, Noble´s paintings have evolved from the naive style that he has developed over the last two decades to present or even combine expressionistic, surreal, symbolic, geometric and even abstract artistic developments all the while maintaining faith with the basic traits that he has created in his art and which frame and even define his work.

This transformation, however, has been so drastic that I do not believe that the local and international markets and galleries have had time to assimilate it yet. What they will make of it only time will tell. Actually – now that I bring up this theme I think I will try and write a more general blog on this subject as soon as I can . . . as ever, I have a few more things to say! 🙂



Love In The Time Of Cholera

Book: Love in The Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Jungles In Paris - Henri Rousseau - Book

Jungles In Paris – The Work of Henri Rousseau


Need International Values for “Noble” or Rousseau´s Artwork?

International Art Auction Prices

will give you all the values you need to know!


Or if you just want to buy a poster try:


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