Her art, her passion, even her likeness are all iconic, but the person behind the name Frida Kahlo is still widely unknown to the general public. The Arkansas Arts Center is setting out to change that.
"Photographing Frida: Portraits of Frida Kahlo" features 65 images of one of Mexico’s greatest painters taken by some of the most important photographers of the 20th century. The exhibit offers glimpses of Kahlo both "as art and artist," capturing everything from her tumultuous marriage to muralist Diego Rivera to her fascination with fashion to the intimate moments of her everyday life.
"'Photographing Frida' is an opportunity to see Frida Kahlo as you’ve never seen her before," chief curator Brian J. Lang said. "These images defined not only the way the world saw her — and continues to see her — but how she saw and depicted herself through her own work."
The exhibit features photographers such as Imogen Cunningham, Emmy Lou Packard, Nickolas Muray, Edward Weston, Graciela Iturbide and Lola and Manuel Álvarez Bravo.
"I insist that Frida was a special being, not a person one ran into every day," Lola Álvarez Bravo said. "When she spoke, when she moved, when she painted, when she expressed herself, she already was inspiring something. To me, she was like birds and flowers and knitted quilts, a Mexican mood concentrated in an epoch and all expressed through her. She was like that."