The weather in Roldanillo is hot and uncomfortable. I wouldn’t recommend a stop there but for one place – the Museo Rayo. This small art museum was opened in 1981 by Omar Rayo, a Colombian abstract artist who worked mainly with geometric shapes. He was born in Roldanillo in 1928 and died there in 2010.
The museum sits a block off the main plaza and is open daily. Admission is COP$5,000 for adults and COP$2,000 for children (as of July 2015). It’s located in a unique building with domes and short hallways linking them to the lobby.
In the permanent galleries, Rayo’s work features geometric shapes in both color and black and white.
In another gallery, temporary exhibitions of works by other artists are on display. The artists on exhibit during my visit were Feliza Bursztyn, who made sculptures out of scrap metal, and textile artist Olga de Amaral. Both artists are Colombian.
After walking through an outdoor space which includes a small auditorium, a final gallery featured Rayo’s works on paper and a short video about his life.
Omar Rayo’s tomb is also on the museum grounds, flanked by two tall palm trees on either side. Even the headstone was designed with a beautiful geometric optical illusion.
The main plaza of Roldanillo is typical of the region with many trees and a fountain in the center.
The church is very modern in design and contains some gorgeous stained glass windows.
A few blocks away, the Parque de La Ermita is another large plaza with many trees and benches. On one end is the Capilla de La Ermita, a national historic landmark.