Frida Khalo, was not just a well known artist. She was a powerful female who stood her ground with an extremely strong will, during the Great Depression. She is , to many women and female latinas an Icon, a hero . She went against the male dominated world and used art as her escape. In a newspaper article by Florence Davies, asked her “who taught you to paint? Was it your husband Diego? She replied “No,I didn’t study with Diego, I just started to paint, Diego does well for a little boy, but It is I who is the big artist!”
Frida had many tragedies in her early life. She struggled with Polio. The disease left her with a limp and that is why she wore long skirts to hide her limp, until she died. Then at age 18, she was in a horrible accident.Frida and her boyfriend, Alejandra Gomez Arias traveled on a bus, that collided with a car. The steel handrail impales her through the hip. This left her in excruciating pain both physically and psychologically. This left her in a full body suit as she shows in this painting.
Frida states “I paint self-portraits because I am so often alone, because I am the person I know best”
Her paintings are considered as folk-art, a mix of realism and fantasy which makes it so beautiful, she uses her surroundings and adds a lot of nature and Mexican artifacts. She made her own distinguished art, not by doing what others did. Free-hand and natural flowing. Yes, she watched Diego Rivera paint, and was inspired by him, also fell in love with the artist, but it was her own.
The relationship between Frida and Diego was very tumultuous and there was a lot of cheating involved on both sides. Here in this painting, she cuts off her hair, in anguish and frustration of her husband sleeping around!
In 1932, Frida had a miscarriage at the Henry Ford hospital. In this painting, you will notice 6 objects, a male fetus, an orchid that looks like a uterus, the stomachs she holds to against, red ribbons are umbilical cords and a snail that represents how slow they did the operation. It was her husband Diego who inspired her to paint her life, when she had nothing else to paint.
It is also a fact that Frida was bisexual and had affairs with Josephine Baker, Georgia O’keefe, and Chavela Vargas, all of whom were famous artists as well.
Frida is a legend to thousands of women, she showed real strength through many trials in her life, she never gave up! She showed us how to keep going and not give up through her paintings and to me, she is an icon, a great artist and lady that Never gave up!
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