Image by Jacqui de Klerk Lonely Planet
Most of Banco de la República's permanent art collection, which features 800 pieces by 250 different artists spread over 16 exhibition halls at two addresses, is reached via elaborate staircases within the same museum complex as Casa de Moneda and Museo Botero. The collection has been reorganized into five time periods spanning the 15th century to modern day, each separately curated. The collection's contemporary art exhibition is located inside Biblioteca Luis Ángel Arango on Calle 12.
Most of it sticks with modern splashes of oils by Colombian artists, including giant figurative paintings by Luis Caballero (1943–95) on the first floor. A bit at odds with the rest are the two first-floor halls toward the east, which focus on 17th- and 18th-century religious objects, including two extraordinary custodias (monstrances). The largest was made of 4902g of pure gold encrusted with 1485 emeralds, one sapphire, 13 rubies, 28 diamonds, 168 amethysts, one topaz and 62 pearls. But who's counting?