Frida Kahlo: this is not a biography

"I paint myself because I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best." ~ Frida Kahlo, Mexican artist, born in 1907 and died in 1954. Best known for her self-portraits.

Frida Kahlo in coloured pencil on acrylic background

On a recent rainy day, I pulled out my sketch book in which I had already prepped a page with a blue acrylic background. I decided to use coloured pencils to draw Frida Kahlo, an artist whose paintings are intriguing as they are sometimes disturbing.

Arguably, the most astounding fact about this artist is that she was in severe pain for a good part of her life, and painting must have alleviated some of the pain she most likely endured, and the boredom of having to stay in a full body cast for months. Often, she painted pain as her subject matter. frida-kahlo-foundation.org

But this is not a biography and I leave you with a few selected quotations that might give us the essence of this provocative artist.

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

~I used to think I was the strangest person in the world but then I thought there are so many people in the world, there must be someone just like me who feels bizarre and flawed in the same ways I do. I would imagine her, and imagine that she must be out there thinking of me too. Well, I hope that if you are out there and read this and know that, yes, it's true I'm here, and I'm just as strange as you."

~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 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 tried to drown my sorrows in alcohol but the bastards learned how to swim.

~I leave you my portrait so that you will have my presence all the days and nights that I am away from you.

 

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