Late medieval and Renaissance forms characterized the art and architecture of the colonial period. The styles that dominated during the 16th and 17th centuries were the plateresque, with its elaborate decoration suggestive of silver plate; mannerism, with its elongated spaces; and the baroque, with its curved lines, extravagant forms, and intricate ornamentation. The Cathedral of Tunja provides excellent examples of the plateresque style, while the church of San Ignacío in Bogotá exemplifies mannerism and the Palace of the Inquisition in Cartagena epitomizes the baroque. A national style of painting developed in Colombia in the 19th century. In 1886 the National School of Fine Arts opened and trained future generations of artists.
In the mid- to late 19th century, Alberto Urdaneta captured the romantic spirit, and Epifanio Garay was a skillful portraitist and history painter. During the 1930s and 1940s painting in Colombia reflected the influence of revolutionary political movements that exalted the masses and native peoples. Abstract art became important in Colombia around the mid-20th century. At the same time, two of Colombia’s best-known artists, Enrique Grau and Fernando Botero, created a new kind of figurative image—grotesque, funny, and rotund. The internationally famous Botero made political statements with his paintings of inflated priests and politicians. During the 1960s violence and social upheaval became themes of Colombian art, as illustrated by the works of Norman Mejía, Luciano Jaramillo, and Leonel Góngora.
As the 19th century progressed, a Distinguished Colombian writers include 19th-century novelist Jorge Isaacs, who is best known for his romantic novel María (1867). José Asunción Silva, known for his fluid use of traditional and new verse forms as well as his melancholy and spirituality, was one of Latin America’s most important modernist poets. Colombia’s most distinguished contemporary author is novelist Gabriel García Márquez, who won the Nobel Prize in literature in 1982. In his most famous novel, Cien años de soledad (1967; One Hundred Years of Solitude, 1970), García Márquez popularized magic realism, combining meticulous descriptions of Colombia’s social and political realities with elements of fantasy. "Colombia" © Emmanuel BUCHOT, Encarta, Wikipedia
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