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Frida Kahlo's Influence Essay

1370 words - 5 pages

Frida Kahlo's Influence

Frida Kahlo's influence still lingers around the world. Even with Frida dead for almost two decades, she is still celebrated and thought of as an idol. Frida Kahlo was an artist in many different ways. Besides Frida's incredible talent to paint surrealist thoughts and emotions on canvas, she also was and artist in her mind and body. Frida's attire of traditional Mexican clothing, which consisted of long, colorful dresses and exotic jewelry, and her thick connection eyebrows, became her trademark. To the public, Frida Kahlo appeared to be full of spirit and joy. She walked through life happily, with a smile glued to her face. However, her feelings of anguish, anger, unhappiness of her painful miscarriages, and physical and mental sufferings were expressed through her artwork. Her paintings were full of personal content. They expressed her internal feelings. The world was unaware of the agony of the "real" Frida Kahlo. The world has been fascinated with Kahlo's artwork because of her emotional background. Her creative style was always breathtaking yet bewildering. Frida was probably the most idolized woman artist of her time and today, she is a figure of legendary power whose work inspires excitement and awe throughout the world. (Daniels 88) Many of Frida Kahlo's artwork was inspired by her own personal experiences; in "The Broken Spine", she paints of her sufferings caused by a tram crash, also in "Diego and I", Kahlo expresses her chaotic marriage with Mexican muralist, Diego Rivera and in "Self-Portrait with Monkeys", Kahlo paints the only children she could have (85).
Kahlo's life began and ended in Mexico City. Although she was born on July 7, 1907, she gave her birth date as July 7, 1910, the year of the Mexican Revolution. (Gradinier103) At the age of 18, Frida Kahlo was on her way back home from school, when her bus collided with a tram; several people were killed on the spot. Alejandro Gomez, Frida's boyfriend at the time described the accident and said that among the iron rods of the train, the handrail broke and went through
Frida from one side to the other at the level of the pelvis (104). Frida Kahlo was left with a broken spinal column, a broken collarbone, several broken ribs, a broken pelvis, and eleven fractures in her right leg. In addition her right foot was dislocated and crushed, and her shoulder was out of joint. For a month, Frida was forced to stay flat on her back, encased in a plaster cast and enclosed in a boxlike structure. The steel handrail from the tram had literally gone through her body at the level of the abdomen; entering on the left side, it had gone out through the vagina. Due to this accident, Frida underwent thirty different operations and three miscarriages. It was during this time that Frida Kahlo discovered her talent for painting and drawing, also during this challenging time for her she produced "The Broken Spine". Having to depend on everyone but herself, Kahlo...

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