Frida WHO?

Melissa Vieira


Frida Kahlo was born in Coyoacán, Mexico (just south of Mexico City) in La Casa Azul (which is now a museum, see above photo) July 6, 1907.


She grew up in this house with her parents and 6 sisters, during the Mexican revolution, which started in 1910. She loved to draw when she was a child, preferring to be alone than playing with her sisters. During her life, she had many, many medical problems and injuries that caused her a lot of physical pain; this is important to note because her pain and isolation is reflected in her paintings.


At age 6, Frida caught a disease called polio, which damaged her right leg. When she was 18 she was in a terrible bus accident that broke her spinal cord, collarbone, ribs, pelvic bone, leg, foot, and shoulder. An iron rail pierced her torso and through the terrible injury she was never able to have children. She was in an enormous amount of constant pain and had to be in a body cast for 3 months. Even after the case was removed, on and off for the rest of her life Frida would spend months at a time lying in bed in La Casa Azul or in the hospital: during this time in bed she painted what she felt and saw.

She admired Mexican artist Diego Rivera and approached him about her art. They ended up getting married, and both continued to be very successful artists. In many of Frida’s paintings you will find her pain and despair- you will find paintings unsuitable for children. I suggest that you view the paintings first and choose which to show your kids.

Frida was a strong voice for women, at a time when women did not have as many rights as they do now. The was an advocate for indigenous rights, and spoke against commercialization and imperialism, sometimes between industrialized US and pre-industrial Mexico. Frida Kahlo died July 14, 1954.

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