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Rosita, 1975Graphite on paper laid on board 17 h x 13 7/8 w in 43 h x 35.3 w cm
Rosita is a portrait of a sitting nude that exemplifies Botero’s endless fascination with the age-old tradition of the female form. Rosita is a fleshy eroticized figure with large rounded proportions lounging on a made bed holding a glass of water. This classical depiction of a nude is rendered in Botero’s rotund technique, paying homage to his European predecessors in a distinct Latin American style. Drawing reclining and standing nudes since he began to paint, he’s mastered infusing figure’s volume with themes of sensuality. The exaggerated shape of her body is a site for experimentation, as it allows Botero to apply delicate shading with a sensuality and profusion of form. The details of her bracelets, necklaces, earrings, and curly hair create the ambiance that perhaps she is a woman from high society. This graphite on paper piece is both satirical and graceful, as it enchants and engages the viewer through art historical references of the female form, a theme dating back through time.
Botero’s works on paper have grown in demand over the years. The whimsical bodies in the drawings retain their robust forms with all the gracefulness of Botero’s paintings, but are smaller and more approachable in his drawings. His mastery of voluptuous fleshy figures has become his trademark style and is immediately recognizable as Botero’s creations around the world.