Mexico.- This month marks 113 years of the birth anniversary of the consecrated Mexican painter, Frida Kahlo. Her tick-tock started to sound on July 6, 1907 and marked a life that was not easy and ended prematurely.

Magdalena Carmen Frida Kahlo Calderón was born on July 6, 1907 in a picturesque house in Coyoacán, known today as “La Casa Azul”. Her parents, photographer Wilhelm Kahlo, of Hungarian-German descent, and Matilde Calderón, originally from Oaxaca, met while working at La Perla jewelry store, and together they had four daughters: Matilde, Adriana, Frida and Cristina. They also conceived a son, Guillermo, who died a few days after his birth.

As is taken up from the INFOBAE news media , in 1904, the couple acquired the property of Coyoacán. They bought it thanks to the photographic projects that Wilhelm Kahlo carried out during Porfirio Díaz’s presidency. Jobs that allowed the Jewish immigrant to break through in Mexico, where he had arrived in 1890

Magdalena Carmen Frida Kahlo Calderón was born on July 6, 1907 in a picturesque house in Coyoacán, known today as “La Casa Azul”. Her parents, photographer Wilhelm Kahlo, of Hungarian-German descent, and Matilde Calderón, originally from Oaxaca, met while working at La Perla jewelry store, and together they had four daughters: Matilde, Adriana, Frida and Cristina. They also conceived a son, Guillermo, who died a few days after his birth.

As is taken up from the INFOBAE news media , in 1904, the couple acquired the property of Coyoacán. They bought it thanks to the photographic projects that Wilhelm Kahlo carried out during Porfirio Díaz’s presidency. Jobs that allowed the Jewish immigrant to break through in Mexico, where he had arrived in 1890.

In her early years, Frida, the third of the daughters, was in charge of helping her father in the study. She participated in the retouching and printing of the images, and accompanied her to her sessions, for fear of having an epileptic attack, since she suffered from this brain disease. However, soon their roles changed, and it was he who became a mainstay for her.

At just six years old, Frida contracted polio. She was in bed for nine months. Due to the condition, her right leg was smaller and thinner than her left, which made her a tease at school. To prevent her from feeling sad, her father encouraged her to practice swimming and cycling, so that she would exercise her more fragile leg.

“There are testimonies about her character at that time,” explains the artist’s biographer, Gerardo Ochoa Sandy. “The one of a jovial girl, rebellious during the classes, of a sparkling language, skillful to put nicknames to her companions and mischievous”.

That fun and lively character, referred to by different voices, died away on September 17, 1925, when he was 18 years old. That day, the bus in which Frida was traveling was hit by a tram, completely destroying it.

“The metal handrail goes through the young woman through the hip, fracturing her pelvic bone and exiting through the vagina. The collision also causes three fractures in the spine, one in the clavicle, in two ribs, and dislocates his right shoulder. The right leg, complained of polio, suffers eleven fractures, plus dislocation of the foot. It was the beginning of a tortuous existence from the physical, psychological and emotional point of view ”, writes Ochoa Sandy.

After the accident, the artist underwent 32 surgeries and stayed in bed for more than three months. It was then that he awoke in her the vocation that would make her a world-class figure. An innate talent that until then was unknown.

The pains, and the long stays in bed, completely undermined her until the end of her days. Concerned about her daughter, her father, with whom she had a special bond, lent her a box of colors and brushes. And her mother, with whom the relationship was more distant, commissioned a carpenter to create a special easel so that she could paint from bed.

The result was superb. So much so that he surprised Diego Rivera himself, an established artist, whom he met through the Cuban communist Juan Antonio Mella, and his partner, the photographer Tina Modorri.

Excited, the young promise went to the painter’s workshop to show him his creations. Her talent aroused in her a sincere admiration that eventually became a greater feeling.

“Frida is the only example in the entire history of art, of someone who tore her breast and heart to tell the biological truth of what she feels in them,” Diego Rivera would say about her.

After meeting Frida, the author of the famous painting  Vendedora de Flores  began to visit La Casa Azul frequently, and in 1929, the couple married. He was 43, and she was 22. “The wedding between an elephant and a dove,” Kahlo wrote years later about the link.

As the digital media continues to tell, the marriage was tortuous. Between 1930 and 1933 they lived in the United States, New York, and Detroit. There, the artist suffered the first of three abortions, and lost her mother, Matilde Calderón. In 1934 they returned to Mexico and settled in a property located in San Ángel, known today as Diego Rivera’s and Frida Kahlo’s Casa Estudio.

The infidelities of her husband, which numbered more than 20, deeply affected the painter, who, unable to have children and mired in numerous muscle aches from the accident, lived in a suffocating depression. The famous Mexican artist even went on to live an affair with his sister-in-law, Cristina, Frida Kahlo’s younger sister. A pain that hurt the artist, despite the fact that she also had extra-marital relationships with men and women.

“The conflicts were equally frequent, derived from the painter’s countless infidelities, perhaps more than twenty, Frida would have quantified at some point. The artist incurred the same weakness, propensity or hobby, out of spite, on a whim, or for pleasure, both with men and women, friends or close friends of both, ”explains Gerardo Ochoa.

In 1939, after 10 years of marriage, the couple divorced. In 1940, however, they remarried, making it clear that they would have autonomous sex lives.

“Remarriage works well. A small number of lawsuits, greater mutual understanding (…) I finally knew that life is like that and the rest is painted bread, “wrote the Mexican painter.

For Frida Kahlo her canvases became a way to release her emotions, especially the pain that haunted her. In 1938, she had her first solo exhibition. It was at the Julien Levy Gallery in New York that André Bretón defined it as a benchmark for surrealism, a description that Frida rejects. And it is that in the artist’s opinion, her paintings did not speak of a dream or imagined world, but of her own reality.

Although she never wanted to include her creations in the surrealist current, the truth is that many critics consider that her paintings often showed a juxtaposition between her dreams (having been a mother, the love of her husband), and her reality (pain and impotence due to health problems that bound her). In this sense, also the biographer Gerardo Ochoa considers the presence of the dreamlike in Frida’s imaginary world.

“Frida will find in painting a way of survival and expression of these painful biographical episodes, in which the crudeness is intertwined with the atonement and where  the tributaries of the dreamlike and the symbolic converge , plus ironic and bloody notes and references to popular culture in Mexico ”, he explains.

In addition, the technique of photographic portrait that he learned from his father is appreciated in his work, and his interest in rescuing the roots of Mexican popular art. Under the influence of Mexico’s revolutionary nationalism, Frida dressed in long skirts, combed her hair with braided buns and colored ribbons, and used accessories from the pre-Columbian style, as seen in  Self-portrait such as Tehuana , 1943, or  Self-portrait with monkeys , also from that year.

New York was not the only city where he exhibited his work. Also it comprised of samples in Paris, 1939; Boston, 1941 and Fildadelfia, in 1943. In 1942, she became part of the Mexican Culture Seminar, and a year later, she became a teacher at the “La Esmeralda” school of fine arts. The first solo exhibition in her Mexico came in 1953.

Despite his professional achievements,  during those years, his health declined.

“In 1950 he remained practically the whole year convalescing in the hospital due to an infection derived from a negligent graft in his spine.  In 1953 […] they amputated a part of his right leg ”, explains Gerardo Ochoa.

Given the possibility of gangrene, Frida Kahlo lost her leg, which at 6 years old was affected by polio. This last blow of her life led her to try to commit suicide twice in 1954, with an opioid overdose. On July 2 of that year, he went in a wheelchair with Diego Rivera and Juan O’gorman, to protest the US intervention in Guatemala. And a few days later, on July 13, she passed away at 47 years old.

Amelia Warner– After graduating from NYU with a master's degree in history, She was also a columnist for many local newspapers. Amelia Warner mostly covers Entertainment topics, but at times loves to write about movie reviews as well.

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