I painted live at Diva lounge 2 weeks ago when the theme of the night was Frida Kahlo in honor of her recent birthday. All the live artists were painting their interpretation of Frida. With Frida Kahlo being one of my favorite female artists, I didn’t want to paint just a regular portrait of her.
Frida was an artist of Mexican and German descent who at the age of 18 was injured in a train accident. The effects of this accident were a cause of physical and emotional pain for her throughout her life. The state of her body was a frequent subject in her self portraits showing the suffering she endured.
I chose to look at Frida the person instead of the artist as an idea for this piece. Calling upon her strength and Mexican roots, I used Frida as her own savior to concoct her own cure using indigenous Mexican healing methods. A bottle of herbs sitting in alcohol (alcoholado) as a rub for her body, a candle, a statue of the Virgen de Guadalupe and a mortar and pestle to crush the plants for the bottle surround her.
Although I believe the accident really shaped Frida, I do wonder what she would have painted had she not been in the accident or didn’t endure permanent damage to her body. Would she still have been the Frida so many came to love?
I am still finishing up this painting but soon it will be going to a new home. Thank you for the inspiration Frida!