Sunday, August 24, 2008

Frida Kahlo Exhibit

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art is hosting a Frida Kahlo exhibit through September 28, 2008. Friends and I went to see it yesterday, and it was wonderful! I'm not one who has been drawn to Kahlo's work, but it was well worth going to see.

This artist was incredibly self-absorbed by the fact that she appears in so many of her paintings ...many of them being self-portraits...and was pre-occupied with fertility. In a sense, the self portraits don't appear to be intended to capture moments of the artist's beauty over time but rather to convey states of mind or emotional experience through the symbolism that is part of each portrait in which she appears. The preoccupation with fertility appears in many of her paintings symbolized by fetuses or shapes that would suggest the female reproductive system. One painting in particular, "Moses", is incredibly packed with imagery with a fetus in the center. As I viewed it from further away, I saw shapes that could suggest a woman's chest with outstretched arms (and the sun as the head), or shapes that suggested a woman's reproductive system. One of the other pieces I particularly liked was, "The Suicide of Dorothy Hale." Kahlo incorporated the frame into the image, and I really like the effect.

At the end of the exhibit, there is a home video shot of Frida and her husband artist, Diego Rivera. In it, she appears to be quite a handsome woman, even with the huge eyebrows! So, if you're in San Francisco, do plan a trip to the museum to see this well-curated exhibit! For more information, click on the title of this post.

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