Colombia: Amnesty unveils first ever Botero tapestry Bogotá airport

Amnesty International has unveiled the first ever, monumental ‘Aubusson’ tapestry designed by Colombian artist and sculptor Fernando Botero at Bogota’s international airport.

The twenty square metre tapestry, ‘The Musicians’, woven over the past several months by artisan weavers at Ateliers Pinton, in France, was commissioned by Bill Shipsey on behalf of Amnesty International to promote the human rights of millions across Colombia.

Tomás Mantilla/Amnesty International

“I’m very honoured that Amnesty International selected me for this present to Colombia. This tapestry will show all visitors to Colombia how important art and culture are here,” said Fernando Botero.

“Colombia is going through one of the most hopeful and challenging moments in its recent history. After the signing of the peace agreement between the government and the former Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia nearly a year ago, all eyes are on the authorities to ensure justice prevails for the millions of victims of the country’s five decade long war,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

Mr. Botero´s gift will be a reminder of the need to bring the voices of the victims to the centre of the implementation of the peace process
Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International

“Mr. Botero´s gift will be a reminder of the need to bring the voices of the victims to the centre of the implementation of the peace process.”

“For many years, Fernando Botero has shown an unbreakable commitment to justice through his art. This tapestry, the largest single piece of his art in the world, will in time become as important to Colombians as Picasso’s ‘Guernica’ is to the people of Spain. It will also remind us how music can provide the soundtrack to the struggle for human rights and ultimately justice,” said Bill Shipsey.

The creation of the tapestry was very generously supported by Viva Colombia and Smurfit Kappa Colombia and has been given on permanent loan to OPAIN for display at the airport.