This past weekend I went to ArtBo, a huge art festival in Bogota that brings in artists and their work from all over Latin America, the United States and Europe. It was truly an impressive display of international creativity and talent.
But who goes to ArtBo and focuses…on the food?
Only a food writer would do that. Like me.
So I went to ArtBo on the last day of the event, October 28, braving a torrential downpour on a very grey Bogota afternoon. I arrived at Corferias, the expo center, wet and cold, and frankly, the first thing that caught my interest and soothed my tired soul was not the excellent art to be seen, but the sight of an Oma coffee cart dispensing free coffees. I immediately got mine and felt warmed up and ready to tackle the task of seeing every last painting, sculpture, drawing and photograph in the immense exposition area.
After walking up and down rows and rows of artwork I have to say that the sight of the Andres D.C. pop-up restaurant/bar was a welcome one. It wasn’t the shiny yellow cow at the entrance that made me smile. Or the huge windmill in bright red, green and blue. Or the plastic grocery baskets painted in the colors of the Colombian flag. Or the odd statue of a metallic horse head emerging from the center of a table. No, I was glad to see food. Not to mention the drinks. Surely a shot of good Colombian aguardiente would chase away the chill of this Bogota afternoon.
At little kiosks around the expo area champagne was sold by the glass or the bottle for those that felt like celebrating, and further along I noticed that Luna had a restaurant set up with a wide antipasto selection.
But when I needed to get off my feet after hours of looking at art, I headed to the Banco de Bogota VIP room, feeling comfortably like a VIP on their environmentally friendly couches, surrounded by environmentally friendly walls made up of grey plastic baskets complete with spider plants peeking out.
I had a tasty Oma cappuccino made by expert hands, and tried snacks that were passed around by waiters in chef’s jackets. I was even treated to sparkling wine, completing that VIP feeling.
Yes, I enjoyed the art. There’ll be a future post about all the art I enjoyed. But as a food writer, it was natural for me to focus on the food. So here’s the awful truth…at ArtBo2013 I enjoyed eating and drinking, too.