Translations:Teresa Cuéllar “Teyé”/4/en

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Teyé” is the artistic name that Teresa Cuéllar chose in order to abbreviate her signature when it was necessary to include her married name. At the suggestion of Fernando Botero, with whom she began to interact at the age of 22, she thought of ways of making her name “visually valid” and found an identity in the memories of one of her childhood nicknames. Her relationship with art began in childhood with the practice of drawing, and was strengthened through academic training in art academies and private classes. Since her youth, she was widely acknowledged on the Colombian art circuit, participating in international group exhibitions and contests, and even holding retrospective shows from the first decade of her career. She is held up in Colombian art as one of the most important painters, sketchers and graphic artists of the second half of the 20th century. In the 1950s, through Fernando Botero and Gloria Zea,, Teyé met the writer Antonio Montaña Mariño (1932-2013) and married him after a year of exchanging correspondence[1]. In a relationship of mutual collaboration, Teyé participated as an illustrator in several publishing projects related to Colombian and Spanish cuisine that were developed by Montaña: La comida en la edad de oro española (Food in the Spanish Golden Age; 1974), Cocina cundinamarquesa (Cundinamarca Cuisine; 1980) and La dicha de cocinar (The Joy of Cooking; 1994). In turn, Montaña provided commentary on his wife’s work for various exhibitions in museums and galleries, and on the career of other artists such as Hernando Tejada, a close friend to whom the writer dedicated one of his books. Teresa Cuéllar’s contributions to the cultural sphere transcend her artistic work. She aided in the reconstruction of an important part of the history of art in the late 19th and early 20th centuries in Colombia, by keeping for many years a series of albums belonging to the Colombian painter and printmaker Ricardo Moros Urbina (1865-1942) that contain large amounts of notes, drawings, studies and prints. The donation of this heritage to the Colombian General Archive enabled Paula Jimena Matiz and María Constanza Villalobos to provide the country with a complete investigation into the work of Moros Urbina in a publication by the District Institute of Cultural Heritage (IDPC). Additionally, as a result of the donation, in 2019 the General Archive opened an exhibition to the public entitled “Dos cronistas de Bogotá. Un encuentro histórico” (Two chroniclers of Bogotá: a historic encounter), which displayed various texts by José Maria Cordovez Moure (1835-1918) in juxtaposition with drawings by Moros Urbina recreated by the artist Angie Vega on the walls and windows of the exhibition.

  1. Interview with Gloria Valencia for the program Correo Especial, broadcast on April 22, 1992. Director: Rodrigo Castaño.