Artist Feature: Frida Kahlo Artist Feature: Frida Kahlo
mary fedorowski stairwell in soft pastel colors

DIVE INTO OUR ARTIST PROCESS VIDEO SERIES

Close Popup
Frida Kahlo coloring sheet

FREE FRIDA KAHLO COLORING SHEET

Close Popup
Artist Feature: Frida Kahlo

Artist Feature: Frida Kahlo

Written by:
Wendy Bonham-Carter
Feb 29, 2024

Frida Kahlo’s contemporary fame is long overdue. Her legacy as a Mexican Surrealist artist and critical voice as a feminist making deeply personal images has made an indelible mark on artists all over the world. Kahlo’s paintings are expressive and full of symbols and personal imagery. They reference fantastical, autobiographical, and political events. Her work was important in the post-Revolutionary Mexican art movement, which was navigating the search for a Mexican identity after the Revolution through the creation of visual culture.

Kahlo’s work takes inspiration from ancient Mesoamerican cultures, the romantic ideals of the Mexican Revolution, folk art, and the European Surrealists. Color is very important in her art, with deep jewel tones and bright hues contributing to the sense of the surreal and dreamy. She also utilizes precise colors to animate the Mexican landscape and to reference folk art and textiles. Kahlo’s paintings were often self-portraits, depicting the artist conversing with her ancestors, lovers, or herself. Many paintings dealt with themes of disability and chronic pain and were groundbreaking in their honesty about that experience.

Frida Kahlo was born and raised in Coyocán, Mexico. She was severely affected by polio as a child, although she eventually recovered and attended medical school. It was during this time that she was hit by a bus, which left her with lifelong pain and ultimate mobility issues. During her recovery, she began to paint while on bed rest. It allowed her respite from the pain, and she decided to continue after her recovery. Kahlo had always been interested in politics and joined the Mexican Communist Party in 1927, where she met Diego Rivera. They quickly got married and began traveling together while continuing to work.

Buy The Not Just Dead White Guys Coloring Book featuring Frida Kahlo!

Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo | Art by Kat Sampson

Frida Kahlo
B. 1907
D. 1954

“I am my own muse. I am the subject I know best. The subject I want to know better.”

Rivera and Kahlo had a fraught relationship, and the turbulence was the subject of many of her paintings. The couple divorced but later reconciled and remained friends. Kahlo had a busy life, befriending artists, politicians, and other notable historical figures while traveling the world. She died as a result of complications of the early bus accident, which kept her bedridden for several years at the end of her life. Kahlo received some recognition in her lifetime, but the rediscovery of her work would take until the 1970s, when feminist art historians and artists were excavating the legacy of forgotten female artists. 

Buy The Not Just Dead White Guys Coloring Book featuring Frida Kahlo!

artist

In collaboration with Kat Sampson, we present The Not Just Dead White Guys coloring book with 24 vibrant portraits, showcasing diverse artists, both deceased and living. Half are contemporary artists, including Frida Kahlo who are shaping the art scene today, while the others are important historical figures. Join us to celebrate their diverse contributions and create a more inclusive art world!

 

 

Written by:
Wendy Bonham-Carter
Feb 29, 2024