Public Art: Bird
Sculptor : © Fernando Botero
Description: A bronze, larger than life, "obese" bird
perched on a marble plinth.
Date Unveiled: The Bird statue was unveiled in
Funded by: United Overseas Bank (UOB).
Cast: Tuscany, Italy.
Location: The Bird is located in Boat Quay in front
of the UOB bank twin towers at Raffles Place, Singapore.
Bronze EA 1/2
The Bird is traditionally associated with peace and serenity. This three dimensional Bird by Botero
also signifies the joy and the power of optimism.
The UBO 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 has with his creation which is shared with the public.
Bird Sculpture Tragedy: On the 10th of June, 1995, the original
Bird sculpture by Botero located in
San Antonio Park , Medellin, Columbia (the sculptor's hometown) was at the center of a senseless tragedy.
Supposed drug dealers had placed a bomb at the feet of the Bird during a public concert in the park. The enormous
explosion sent schrapnel flying into the crowd killing 23 innocent people (including a woman who was never
identified) and wounding over 200. In January, 2000, the devastated artist placed an identical bronze Bird entitled
"The Bird of Peace" right next to the remains of the renamed original ("Hommage against the Stupidity" ), as a sign
of peace. Botero said at the time 'When I learned of it, I said leave the (damaged sculpture) there, as a monument
On the blog www.2009-bird-sculpture.blogspot.com.au they have
included an article (written in German) hinting at a Government cover-up but I have been unable to verify the story
or find the original article. Basically it claims that color negative film taken at the time of the
explosion was later developed but withheld from the public. Ten years later the footage was restored and anaylsed
with more questions raised than answered . The official media release at the time of the explosion blamed "young
drug dealers" or FARC for the explosion but experts who anaylsed the photos of the original damage believed
the center of the explosion was located inside the airtight sealed metal figure not at the base. Which explains way
so many people lost their lives that night.
Bird Sculpture Trivia: Botero made four Bird
sculptures, one is located at the airport in Florence, Italy, and the two others are in San Antonio Park,
Fernando Botero Quote
: "The most Colombian of Colombian artists."
References : www.bird-sculpture.blogspot.com.au, www.publicart.sg/?q=Botero-Bird,