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Santiago Medina

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Full Name  Santiago Medina
Name  Santiago Medina
Website  Medina Fine Art
Occupation  sculptor, doctor
Alma mater  CES University

Santiago Medina
Born  April 21, 1964 (age 51) (1964-04-21) Medellin, Columbia.

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Santiago Medina (born in 1964) is a Colombian-American sculptor. Medina's diverse career spans work in art, medicine, medical imaging (Radiology), medical research, and education.


He is best known for his stainless steel sculptures – both outdoor monumental and indoor smaller works. He uses advanced medical imaging technology and software to design and create his masterpiece sculptures which include designs for organizations such as Harvard University School of Public Health, Washington University in St. Louis, USA, Tufts University, Florida International University, CES University in Colombia, Miami Children's Hospital, St. Louis Catholic Church in Miami, Santa Maria de los Angeles Church (Colombia), Monasterio de la Santa Madre Laura (Colombia), and Ramson Everglades School in Miami.

Medina's works stand in multiple galleries and private collections throughout the world and has been seen at major international exhibitions including Art Basel Week Red Dot Fair in Miami, Palm Beach International Art Fair, Arte America (Miami, USA), Miami International Art Fair (MIA), Sincronia Feria de Arte (Bogota, Colombia), and Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables.

Sculptor Santiago Medina lecture "Where Science meets Art" October 2018

Sculpture and artistic work

Medina's earliest sculptures in the 1990s were in clay and over time began to also work in bronze and stainless steel. The pieces became larger in the 2000s and 2010s. In 2012, he worked with renowned urban architect Juan Felipe Uribe de Bedout on the Cedro Verde Project in Colombia. In 2014, "Life", a nine-foot monumental stainless steel sculpture was installed at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, Massachusetts to celebrate the first centennial of the school.

Mariavelia Savino, well known curator and gallerist, summarizes Medina's art as: "What is most unique about contemporary artist Santiago Medina is his aesthetic depth and erudition to capture, in stainless steel and bronze, the authentic expressiveness of the visual arts. His art displays energetic but yet enigmatic spiraling figures in continuous movement rising to the heavens. The topics covered joy and harmony, lovers and maternal love, life and friendship, ecstasy and passion, are the fabric of who we are as humans. All these strong emotions converge in his seductive art. Endowed with a solid training in the masters but with avante-garde inspiration, the work of Santiago Medina is clearly captivating and will transcend generations.”

Early life

Santiago Medina was born and raised in Medellin, Colombia to a family of Artists and Physicians. His great-grandfather Emiliano Mejia was a pioneer photographer and painter in Colombia in the late 1800s and early 1900s. His grandfather, Rafael Mejia Uribe, was also a painter and prominent pediatrician in Colombia . He was the first director of Clinica Noel in the 1920s, a pediatric charity hospital in Medellin. His father, Jorge Medina Gomez, was a physician and radiologist who graduated from Universidad de Antioquia School of Medicine at the head of his class. His mother, Susana, was a hospital volunteer at Medellin General Hospital

He attended the Dora Ramirez Art Institute in Medellin, Colombia since age 5. Dora Ramirez was a leading artist and renown teacher of her time who has paintings at the Museum of Antioquia.In the 1980s, he trained at Libe de Zulategui Atelier. De Zulategui a leading art teacher and critic in Colombia.

He studied at the Columbus School, a bilingual English-Spanish school, accredited both by the US and Colombian association of schools. He graduated at the head of his class and there he discovered his love for sports specially road cycling which is very popular in Colombia, country which breeds some of the top climbers in the world. In 1982, he start medical school at CES University with the idea of bringing medical sensibility to his strong artistic expression. He graduated first of his class and gave the graduation speech.


Inspired by the dual careers of Russian painter and lawyer Wassily Kandinsky and of his grandfather Rafael Mejia as a physician and artist he embark on doing medicine and art as complimentary careers. He decided to specialize in Radiology (Medical Imaging) because of its artistic 3D visual appeal and ground breaking technology. He did his Diagnostic Radiology (Medical Imaging) residency at the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology, Washington University in St. Louis, USA. He then subspecialized in Neuroradiology (Brain imaging) and Pediatric Radiology (Medical Imaging in Children) at Boston Children's Hospital a Harvard School of Medicine affiliated Hospital. Looking to bring a social meaning to his medical and artist work he enrolled in the Harvard School of Public Health to do a Master of Public Health with a concentration in Health Care Management. He then went ahead to become a leader in Evidence-based medicine in medical Imaging. He and co-editor Craig Blackmore, MD, MPH went on the publish in 2006, the first ever book on Evidence-Based Imaging and subsequently with Kimberly Applegate, MD,MS a series on this topic including dedicated adult, pediatric and neuroimaging books. He has co-authored more than 50 peer review articles in major international medical journals including Pediatrics, Radiology, Neurology, American Journal of Neuroradiology and Pediatric Radiology.

While living in Boston he had the chance to see the monumental sculptures of Henry Moore at Harvard University ("Four Piece Reclining Figure") and Massachusetts Institute of Technology ("Three Piece Reclining Figure Draped"). As Medina studied these sculptures he realized the power of the monumental sculpture and the beauty of the abstract, a realization that gave a new direction to his future works.


Following his early training in rigorous academic artistic training with Ramirez and de Zulategui he enrolled in specialized courses at the Cincinnati Institute of Art and then at the University of Miami Night Art Program. After traveling in Italy in 1990s to study Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, he realized that in order to become a master sculptor he needed to have deeper training in drawing and oil painting. In 2003, he joins the Romero and Hidalgo Art Studios in Miami to work and study. Renowned Venezuelan master painters Abdon Romero and Sonia Hidalgo inspired him to master oil painting on linen in the tradition of the Renaissance masters ( Works from this 2000s included paintings from his blue period “Hope” and “Enlightment“ currently at the College of Medicine Florida International University. Commissions for CES University Founders Library included “Imagine: A tribute to John Lennon” and “Da Vinci, the universal man”. Religious commission included “Resurrection” for Saint Louis Catholic Church in Miami, USA, “ Jesus Savior” for Santa Maria de Los Angeles Church in Colombia and “A tribute to John Paul ll” for Saint Madre Laura Convent in Colombia.

To further his studies in monumental sculpture he studies and works with American sculptor Nilda Comas at the Legacy Art Studio in Pietrasanta, Italy and Ft. Lauderdale, USA.While studying in Pietrasanta and Carrara in Italy he decided to open large studios in Miami (Pinecrest), USA and Medellin, Colombia devoted primarily to sculptures. Early bronze works are at the Washington University School of Becker Medical Library and Harvard School of Public Health FRANÇOIS-XAVIER BAGNOUD building.

Medina explains the passion behind his sculptures as "I bring inert bronze and stainless steel to life by creating timeless masterpieces for art lovers. " In 2013 during the Centennial of the Harvard School of Public Health, Medina started to work on a monumental sculpture to commemorate such an important event. The nine-foot-high monumental stainless steel sculpture "Life" was unveiled at Harvard in October 2014. Medina explains the motivation behind the sculpture: “ I wanted to capture the essence of the Harvard School of Public Health which is the improvement of life. My inspiration was the double helical DNA molecule which is the code for all forms of life. Therefore, the sculpture has a double helical spiraling shape. Stainless steel with its very high quality finish was used not only because of its beauty and durability; but because it reflects life around it constantly changing its mood as the day, night and seasons come and go. In addition, the sculpture is actually alive by changing not only its look but also its temperature from the chili New England winters to the pleasant summer days.”

In 2015, Medina is working on a monumental stainless steel sculpture for Miami Country Day School to celebrate its 75th anniversary.

Among his most important exhibitions during his career are 2006 Colombia Consulate in Miami, USA; 2011 and 2014 Art Basel Week Red Dot Fair, 2013 and 2014 Palm Beach International Art Fair, Biltmore Hotel Coral Gables Solo Exhibitions (2010, 2011 and 2014), 2012 Arte America, 2013 Houston Art Fair, Miami International Art MIA Fair (2013, 2014), Sculpt Miami (2013,2014) and Sinfonia Art Fair Bogota (2014).


In 1980 was selected to paint a Mural for the Piloto Public Library Medellin's (Colombia) most important public library. In 1981 he became an Honorary Citizen of Huntsville, Alabama USA for improving cultural and artistic relationships between the USA and Colombia.In 1999, the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service granted Santiago Medina an Alien of Extraordinary Ability Immigrant Visa. Granted under very special circumstances to applicants who can prove outstanding artistic, scientific, athletic, community, or scholarly performance, this Visa affords the recipient and his family permanent residence status in the U.S.


Santiago Medina Wikipedia