Friday, July 6, 2012


On this day in 1907 one of my SHE-Ro's was born in a small suburb of Mexico City (Coyoacan) - Mexican Painter Magdalena Carmen Frieda Kahlo y Calderón AKA Frida Kahlo. Her life story began in the same place where it ended. She was born in her parents home in Coyoacan, known as Casa Azul or The Blue House. Pain and suffering was the backdrop of her life from the early age of 6 when she contracted Polio and suffered at the hands of bullies and critics for her "bad leg" which she hid under pants and later long skirts for the rest of her life.  
Frida age 12: 1919

At 18 (Sept 17, 1925) she was involved in a bus accident that nearly took her life but after surviving it left her with a lifetime of injuries. The bus she was riding on with her then boyfriend collided with a trolley car.
Frida age 18: 1925

Due to her immobilization after her accident she began to sketch and paint to occupy her time. She spent months confined to her bed in various body casts.  She would return to bed and the casts over the course of her life as her health deteriorated. Always with paint brush in hand.

Frida painted her first self portrait in 1926 
"Self Portrait in a Velvet Dress" 

Once "back on her feet" Frida's next life milestone came in the form of famous Mexican Muralist painter Diego Rivera, 20 years her senior, a mentor, a lover, a tragedy, a husband, and a friend. 

They met in early 1928 and were married (for the first time) August 21, 1929 to the total disgust of her religious mother. She commemorated the event in a portrait.

"Wedding Portrait" - 1931 
Currently at the San Fransisco Museum of Modern Art

She was a VERY multi-faceted individual. She was intelligent, brave, and courageous. She was an eclectic mix of the masculine and feminine. 

She was openly bi-sexual, she drank, smoked and cursed like a sailor in a time where "ladies were ladies" and such behavior was seriously frowned upon, especially in her conservative homeland of Mexico with women's traditional roles.  Her dress defied the "trends" of the time. I will talk about Frida's fashion in another piece where I can get more in depth.

Check out this 3 min synopsis video about Frida!   

Want to see the real thing??? Here is a list of the the locations of Frida's Works and where they are today!

LEARN more about Frida:

A&E Biography: Frida Kahlo
Hollywood Bio-Pic: Frida *Watch all the special features too - AMAZING how they made this*

Biography of Frida Kahlo By Hayden Herrera
Diary of Frida Kahlo: An Intimate Self Portrait

Frida Kahlo's Home - Now Museo Frida Kahlo
Largest private collection of Frida & Diego's work: Delores Olmedo Museum
*I have been to ALL 3 of the above places in Mexico. AMAZING! A MUST see if you love and appreciate Frida*

VIVA FRIDA PART II  - will examine her later life, more of her work and her relationship with Diego up until her death.

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