While in Mexico City I was lucky to be able to visit the Frida Kahlo Museum and Casa Azul in Coyoacan. I have always loved her as an artist, and seeing her home, studio and newly displayed collection of clothing, personal items and the braces that wrapped her mangled body blew me away. From her bout with polio as a young girl of 6, to her streetcar accident as a teenager, she lived in and out of hospitals and was bedridden for periods of time. In her bedroom, you get a sense of this as there are mirrors over her bed so she could draw and paint herself. Seeing Frida’s wheelchair set up at her easel in her studio makes her physical suffering almost palpable.
She was never able to have children due to her injuries and countless surgeries. This was a source of great sadness that she worked through in her art throughout her life. As I walked into the garden after touring her home, I took note of a woman whose style of dress bore an uncanny resemblance to the image of Frida Kahlo. She was holding hands with her daughter admiring the garden. In my heart Frida was smiling down on the mother and daughter who were paying homage to her. Viva Frida!
Photography Beth Horta for Sweet Sabelle.