Prompts & Circumstance: Frida Kahlo

(Caption) Frida Kahlo, 1941 George Eastman House / Hulton Archive / Getty Images

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Though at the peak of her artistic career, Frida Kahlo, took her work in a direction which led to many notable achievements, it wasn’t until much later after her death when her work and life made her an important role model as an inspiring figure, both in the art community and as an icon of growing feminism. Perhaps the most significant cause of an increasing interest in her life and artistic work had much to do with the artist’s personal struggles, which she often bravely depicted in several self-portraits.

According to several biographical accounts of her life, Frida faced many hurdles to becoming the inspiration of strength as she is seen today. When she was about six years old, she was diagnosed with Polio, which left one of her legs considerably thinner than the other, and consequently she walked with an obvious limp – a minimal but permanent deficit. At only 18, Frida suffered a terrible accident leaving her seriously injured and causing her to endure a life of constant pain and other health ailments. She reportedly underwent over 30 surgeries in her lifetime due to the health problems she suffered. After marrying later in life, her relationship and marriage to husband and fellow artist, Diego Rivera, was reportedly riddled with strife and heartbreak having apparently split up after she had been unfaithful; though there are claims that the struggles within the marriage were due to mutual undoing and that they had lived together but in separate living quarters, after later getting married for the second time. Continue reading