Frida Kahlo

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In celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month which began Sept. 15th and runs through Oct. 15th I’d like to honor Latina artist, political activist, author and true unconventional nonconformist Frida Kahlo (July 6, 1907 – July 13, 1954). Frida is the epitome of intersectionality. Born of mixed heritage (father Hungarian/German – mother Spanish/Mestizo) she was best known for her series of 55 self-portraits, as she put it “I paint myself because I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best” produced 200 paintings, numerous drawings and vibrant surrealist renderings heavily enveloped in symbolic representations of physical and psychological wounds rooted in the suffering of more than 30 surgeries. “I never painted dreams. I painted my own reality.”

Way ahead of her time Frida has been described as: “…one of history’s grand divas…a tequila-slamming, dirty joke-telling smoker, bi-sexual that hobbled about her bohemian barrio in lavish indigenous dress and threw festive dinner parties for the likes of Leon Trotsky, poet Pablo Neruda, Nelson Rockefeller, and her on-again, off-again husband, muralist Diego Rivera.”

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Frida 4 years old

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Diego and Frida

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Frida Kahalo Quotes

“I drank to drown my sorrows, but the damned things learned how to swim.”

“Feet, what do I need them for
If I have wings to fly.”

“I don’t paint dreams or nightmares, I paint my own reality.”

“I love you more than my own skin and even though you don’t love me the same way, you love me anyways, don’t you? And if you don’t, I’ll always have the hope that you do, and i’m satisfied with that. Love me a little. I adore you.”

“I hope the exit is joyful and i hope never to return.”

“Nothing is worth more than laughter. It is strength to laugh and to abandon oneself, to be light. Tragedy is the most ridiculous thing.”

“I paint flowers so they will not die.”

“I paint myself because I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best.”

“Nothing is absolute. Everything changes, everything moves, everything revolves, everything flies and goes away.”

“I think that little by little I’ll be able to solve my problems and survive.”

“I paint my own reality. The only thing I know is that I paint because I need to, and I paint whatever passes through my head without any other consideration.”

“They are so damn ‘intellectual’ and rotten that I can’t stand them anymore….I [would] rather sit on the floor in the market of Toluca and sell tortillas, than have anything to do with those ‘artistic’ bitches of Paris.”

“I wish I could do whatever I liked behind the curtain of “madness”. Then: I’d arrange flowers, all day long, I’d paint; pain, love and tenderness, I would laugh as much as I feel like at the stupidity of others, and they would all say: “Poor thing, she’s crazy!” (Above all I would laugh at my own stupidity.) I would build my world which while I lived, would be in agreement with all the worlds. The day, or the hour, or the minute that I lived would be mine and everyone else’s – my madness would not be an escape from “reality”.”

“I tried to drown my sorrows, but the bastards learned how to swim, and now I am overwhelmed by this decent and good feeling.”

“The most important thing for everyone in Gringolandia is to have ambition and become ‘somebody,’ and frankly, I don’t have the least ambition to become anybody.”

“I want to be inside your darkest everything”
― Frida Kahlo, The Diary of Frida Kahlo: An Intimate Self-Portrait

“They thought I was a Surrealist, but I wasn’t. I never painted dreams. I painted my own reality.”

“i was born a bitch.
i was born a painter.”

“There have been two great accidents in my life. One was the train the other was Diego. Diego was by far the worst.”

“Take a lover who looks at you like maybe you are a bourbon biscuit.”

“You deserve the best, the very best, because you are one of the few people in this lousy world who are honest to themselves, and that is the only thing that really counts.”

“At the end of the day, we can endure much more than we think we can.”

“pain, pleasure and death are no more than a process for existence. The revolutionary struggle in this process is a doorway open to intelligence”
― Frida Kahlo, The Diary of Frida Kahlo: An Intimate Self-Portrait

“Traté de ahogar mis penas… pero las condenadas aprendieron a nadar.”

“My painting carries with it the message of pain.”

“I love you more than my own skin.”

“I drank because I wanted to drown my sorrows. But now the damned things have learned to swim ,and now decency and good behavior weary me.”

“No moon, sun, diamond, hands —
fingertip, dot, ray, gauze, sea.
pine green, pink glass, eye,
mine, eraser, mud, mother, I am coming.”
― Frida Kahlo, The Diary of Frida Kahlo: An Intimate Self-Portrait

“I paint self-portraits because I am so often alone, because I am the person I know best.”

“There is nothing more precious than laughter”
― Frida Kahlo, The Diary of Frida Kahlo: An Intimate Self-Portrait


12 thoughts on “Frida Kahlo

    • Ahhh, thank you Roach

      Taking Race and Gender in the Media classes at Santa Monica College and decided what better way to showcase my ethnic culture than to publish my assignments here!

      • Good for you. I’m sure you are giving someone serious fever with your thought-process. AND… some of this energy comes with KNOWING what time it is here in America. Keep up the good work and STAY POSITIVE!!!

        • lol… I don’t think my young classmates appreciate my views based on my age (a young 62) I’ve seen so much more than these 20 year olds’ when it comes to prejudice, racial disparity, riots (Watts 1965 and 1992) March’s etc…. I find it funny; their perspective is limited to today so I check them constantly with facts which I know it totally pisses them off. I attempt to be respectful and considerate but sometimes you just can’t get around details and experience.

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