From ABC News/Univision
“Imagine being in Frida Kahlo‘s childhood home and opening up a closet that has been locked for decades. Inside are hundreds of personal items – personal photographs, love letters, medications, jewelry, shoes, and clothing that still hold the smell of perfume and the last cigarette she smoked.
That is exactly what happened when Hilda Trujillo Soto, the director of the Frida Kahlo Museum opened the closets that had been locked since the Mexican artist’s death in 1954. Inside were over 300 items belonging to Frida Kahlo, and now, a wide array of what was found is on display at the Casa Azul, the Frida Kahlo Museum in the Coyoacán neighborhood of Mexico City.
The exhibit, Appearances Can Be Deceiving: The Dresses of Frida Kahlo, a collaboration between the museum and Vogue Mexico, brings to an end an elaborate 50 year scheme to keep private the intimate details of Kahlo’s life. It started when she died in 1954, as a distraught Diego Rivera, the famous Mexican muralist and Frida Kahlo’s husband, locked the doors to her closet and never let anyone enter for fear that the contents would be mishandled and ruined.”
Kahlo contracted polio when she was six, leaving her right leg shorter and thinner than her left. Then, when she was 18, a metal tube pierced through Frida’s abdomen during a bus crash, subjecting her to painful operations and long periods of bed rest throughout her life.
In keeping with her flamboyance and ebullient spirit, Frida wore long, flowing tehuana skirts, lacy and colorful, that hid this affliction and celebrated her Mexican heritage.
Later in life, Frida’s right leg had to be amputated. Included in the exhibit is a ornate red boot with the prosthetic leg Kahlo wore after the amputation.
Also on view are three ornate corsets, one styled by Jean-Paul Gaultier in memory of Frida after her death. Frida had to wear plaster corsets to alleviate her excrutiating spine pain.
For more on Frida Kahlo on this blog, click here.