The Republic of Colombia lies in the north-west of South America, with the Caribbean Sea to the north and the Pacific Ocean to the west. Its continental neighbours are Venezuela and Brazil to the east, and Peru and Ecuador to the south, while Panama connects it with Central America. The coastal areas have a tropical rainforest climate, the plateaux are temperate, and in the Andes mountains there are areas of permanent snow. Total average annual rainfall is 2,676 mm (105 ins). The language is Spanish. Almost all of the inhabitants profess Christianity, and around 87% are Roman Catholics. The national flag (proportions 2 by 3) has three horizontal stripes, of yellow (one-half of the depth) over dark blue over red. The capital is Bogotá.
Population: 50,000,000 (2020 estimate)
Religion (2018 estimate): Colombia is primarily Christian, with 73% of the population representing Roman Catholicism and 14% Protestant. 10% of the country identifies as non-religious.
Language: most Colombians speak Spanish and it’s the country’s official language
Colombia declared independence from Spain on July 20, 1810 which is now celebrated as its independence day. Their independence was recognized on August 7, 1819.
Image Citation: Country Flag (Colombia), in Europa World online. London, Routledge. University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Retrieved 29 October 2020 from http://www.europaworld.com/entry/co.FLAG
Citation: Location, Climate, Language, Religion, Flag, Capital (Colombia), in Europa World online. London, Routledge. University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Retrieved 29 October 2020 from http://www.europaworld.com/entry/co.is.2
The Coastal Lowlands - Pacific coast
The Caribbean Lowlands stretch along the coast of the Caribbean and is where most trade occurs. Because of this, 20% of people live here.
The Andes Mountains cover western Colombia
The Eastern Plains - cover about 60 percent of Colombia but only 2% of the people live in this region.
Colombia is known as “the land of a thousand rhythms” for its rhythmic and musical diversity. Across a dozen geographical and cultural regions, Colombia’s musical genres and instruments vary greatly. Just a few genres include Cumbia, Vallenato, Currulao, Juga, and Champeta. Some instruments used in Colombian music include the accordion, the tambora bass drum, the guitar, and Llanos’ harp.
A blind man plays the accordion to entertain spectators gathered to watch the 53rd Vuelta a Colombia, which took place against a backdrop of civil war and violence. The bicycle race is guarded along its entire route by heavily armed Colombian soldiers as it crosses provinces controlled variously by the Revolutionary Army of Colombia (FARC), the National Liberation Army (ELN) and the Paramilitaries (AUC).
A typical meal in Colombia can include:
Appetizer - a favorite soup, ajiaco, made with chicken, potatoes, and guasca (Galinsoga parviflora)
Main Dish - bandeja paisa (red beans, white rice, ground meat, chicharon (fried pork belly/rounds), fried egg, plantain, chorizo (pork sausage), arepa (corn biscuit), black pudding, avocado and lemon
Side dish - papas criollas al horno (roasted Andean potatoes)
Dessert - bocadillo (guava jelly - Colombian confection made with guava pulp and panela)
Gabriel García Márquez (1927-2014) was a Colombian novelist, short story writer, screenwriter, and journalist. Known as Gabo or Gabito throughout Latin America for being one of the most significant writers of his time, Márquez won the 1972 Neustadt International Prize for Literature and the 1982 Nobel Prize in Literature. His work popularized the style known as magic realism, the use of magical elements and events in ordinary and realistic situations, and can be seen in One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967), Chronicle of a Death Foretold (1981), and Love in the Time of Cholera (1985). Márquez was called the greatest Colombian who ever lived by former Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos.
Barranquilla’s Carnival is one of the biggest festivals in the world and is celebrated four days before Holy Week in Barranquilla. The festival includes: dancing (Spanish paloteo, African Congo, indigenous mico y micas); music (Colombian music, cumbia (folk traditions)), and masquerade parades. Colombia’s national congress proclaimed that the Carnival of Barranquilla is a cultural masterpiece. The slogan for the festival is “Those who live it are those who enjoy it.”
The carnival queen during the Battle of Flowers (two groups of rich families riding carriages decorated with flowers).
Congo dancing group
Alejandro Obregón 1920-1992
After being born in Colombia and moving to Spain, England, and Boston, Obregón decided to stay in France until about 1955. Here he painted his piece Still Life in Yellow, and within this piece we can see his personal style and technical ability. Obregón utilizes color within his geometric forms and controlled expressionism. Over the period of four decades, Obregón incorporated into his painting a repertory of themes that transcend literary reference and are unmistakably Colombian in character. His work Dead Student works as an allusion to the excesses of the dictatorship within Colombia, later won him the Guggenheim Prize for Colombia.
Fernando Botero was born in 1932 and is a Colombian figurative sculptor. His style is called Boterismo and represents people in large, exaggerated volume to suggest political criticism and humor. Because his work is around the world, he is considered the most recognized and quoted living artist from Latin America. Some of his most notable works include: Mona Lisa, Age Twelve (1959), Pope Leo X (after Raphael) (1964), The Presidential Family (1967), The Dancers (1987), Death of Pablo Escobar (1999).