Visual Arts

Arty Girl: Frida Kahlo talk

By Lilia Menconi

I'm not going to bore you with the ga-jillionth summary of Frida Kahlo's life. But, just in case you missed the movie with Selma Hayek, the autobiography, the children's book, the plush toy, the poster and the endless websites made by teenage girls dedicated to this artist, here's the quick and dirty:

-Born in 1907 -Grew up in a small town on the outskirts of Mexico City -Diagnosed with Polio at age 6 -Experienced life-altering bus accident in 1925 that resulted in a broken spinal column, collarbone, ribs, pelvis, eleven fractures in her right leg, a crushed and dislocated right foot, and a dislocated shoulder...not to mention, that pesky iron rail that pierced her abdomen and uterus -Taught herself how to paint as she recovered in a full body cast -Spent a lifetime with chronic pain and relapses that left her bedridden for months at a time -Still rocked her own stellar fashion style inspired by traditional Mexican garb -Married the wealthy and successful Mexican muralist, Diego Rivera -Openly bisexual (and a total sex vixen) -Boned down with Russian revolutionary and Marxist theorist, Leon Trotsky -Divorced Rivera after numerous affairs on both sides including an affair between Rivera and her younger sister -Eventually remarried Rivera -Had her leg amputated due to gangrene -Died in 1954, possible suicide

Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, wedding day in 1929.

Okay, so maybe I did bore you after all. Undeniably, however, her compelling life story makes it tough to resist the urge to know more. So if you're thirsty for more Fridamania, head to the Scottsdale Civic Center Library on Sunday, October 19th for a talk by Gregorio Luke. The multi-media presentation covers her paintings writings, clothing and cooking. Along with details of her story, he's got some rare color photos, quotes and recipes. Luke certainly knows what he's talking about as he is the former director fo the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, CA, the former Consul of the Cultural Institute of Mexico in Los Angeles and former Deputy Director of Mexican cultural Institute in Washington D.C. (dang!). The whole gig is presented with Friends of Mexican Art (FOMA) and tickets are $7.

Sunday, October 19th at 2 p.m. at the Civic Center Library. Call 480-944-2787 for tickets or visit for more info.

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Lilia Menconi
Contact: Lilia Menconi