From Coyoacan, Mexico city the famous painter, Magdalena Carmen Frida Kahlo Calderon was inspired by Mexican popular culture and was an active communist. One of the greatest painters was more inclined to do self portraits as she was asked why she replied saying “Because I am so often alone…. because I am the subject I know best.”
Kahlo lived in Paris for in 1939 and befriends Pablo Picasso and Marcel Duchamp. She was only able to attend one of her exhibitions in the United States in a four-poster bed due to losing her left foot to gangrene.The feminist icon has been an inspiration to women all over the world including Beyonce. Despite her several devastating miscarriages, deteriorating health, unfaithful husband and depression she continued to paint and create a series of 55 bizarre and unique self-portraits. Here are some facts that would leave you curious:
- She had a car accident when she was 18. On September 17, 1925 whilst on a bus with Alejandro a steer pole went through her hip and left her with broken bones from spinal column to ribs and collarbone.
- After the accident, she started painting. She always embraced and over exaggerated her monobrow and moustache in her self-portraits. Even though she was bedridden for months she still painted.
- She originally wanted to become a doctor because she was withered by polio at the early age of 6.
- She was an active member of the Mexican communist party and part of the Young communist League.
- Her home where she died is now a museum.
- She had mirrors everywhere.
- She gave her self-portraits as gifts.
- Her problematic marriage to Diego Rivera led to more pain and paintings. They divorced and then remarried in 1929.
- She is on the 500 peso bill.