Today in Mighty Girl history, Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, a painter whose life history has taken almost as much prominence as her talent, was born in 1907. Widely known for her striking appearance, dramatic health issues, and tumultuous relationship with spouse and artist Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo incorporated each of these subjects into her artwork.
Born in Coyoacán, Mexico, young Frida’s life was punctuated by prominent events: polio, the Mexican Revolution, and a horrific bus accident among them. Recovery from the bus trauma left her isolated and in extreme pain; painting became her distraction and solace. Self-portraits were her frequent focus, as she explained, “I paint myself because I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best.”
Long celebrated as a folk icon in her homeland, it was not until the 1980s, well after her 1954 death, that Kahlo became widely recognized for her artistic skill. Now, her brightly-colored, often surreal artwork is in high demand. She has also been memorialized in movies and songs, on currency, and in countless books. Her birthplace and adult residence, The Blue House, is maintained today as a museum in her honor.
There are several excellent biographies to introduce Kahlo to young readers, including “Frida” (http://www.amightygirl.com/frida) and “Me, Frida” (http://www.amightygirl.com/me-frida), both for ages 4 to 8; “Frida Kahlo: The Artist who Painted Herself” for ages 6 to 11 (http://www.amightygirl.com/frida-kahlo-the-artist-who-painted-herself); and the recently released “Who Was Frida Kahlo?” for ages 8 to 12 (http://www.amightygirl.com/who-was-frida-kahlo).