” Viva la vida Frida”
Frida Kahlo remains one of my all time greatest artistic as well as human inspirations! By chance i came across the movie of the same name in 2003. I was captivated. This woman went through so many obstacles, creating ,as her husband Diego Riviera put it, poetry on a canvas.
Her art has not only greatly moved me but was also the driving force behind the first feeble attempts of me taking up painting! Her influence can very much be seen in said paintings and her use of of colour has stayed with me and my art although the medium has changed.
For those of you that don’t know her, here is a little introduction to her art and her life.
Magdalena Carmen Frieda Kahlo y Calderón was a self-trained mexican painter, born on the 6th of july 1907 in Coyoacán, Mexico and died there at the age of 47.
She produced a great body of work, best know for her self-portraits, which she painted with her often being the subject and the object nearest to her, after a nearly fatal bus accident as a teenager which left her bed-ridden for great lengths of time.
She used her art to work through her isolation, pains, fears and disappointments and her way of portraying the female form and condition was uncompromising and raw.
She was married to the famous mexican muralist Diego Riviera, whoms extramaternal affairs caused her a great deal of pain, which can also be found in her paintings, albeit her own infidelities soon followed with men as well as women. Leon Trotzky, Josephine Baker and Isamu Noguchi where intimate relations of her to name but a few.
Riviera and Kahlo where divorced and re-married until her untimely death on july the 13th, 1954 at the age of 47. The official cause of death was given as a pulmonary embolism, although thee are plenty of rumours surrounding the ‘real’ reason to her early passing.
Shortly before she died, she wrote in her diary ” i hope the exit is joyful – and i hope never to return”
Words hardly express the inspiration i draw of the legacy left by this woman. I am just so grateful that she was alive to make such a huge impression on me.
In homage to her i have a poppy tattoo on my wrist with the caption-
Viva la Vida