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All Words and Photos: Rachel Eisley

Artisphere was packed to the brim on opening night of “Frida Kahlo: Her Photos : The celebrated artists’ life revealed through personal photographs” is past Thursday evening. The exhibit is comprised of 240 photographs from the prolific Mexican artist’s life, and range from casual family shots to portraits of Communist leaders, to beautiful still lives among other themes. My favorite image was a photo of three vertical objects laid across each other – a guitar neck, an ear of corn and a bandoleer full of bullets, symbolizing the arts, Mexican agriculture and the right of self defense in an arrangement evocative of the Soviet Union’s crossed hammer and sickle.  The exhibit also features photos by several master photographers, including Brassai and Man Ray.  The photos are hung at eye level around the gallery, which encourages close inspection by the audience, especially helpful because of the intimate size of most images.

After Kahlo’s death in 1954, 6,500 of her personal photographs and other ephemera were locked away until the Mexican government decided to unseal the collection in 2007, and invite Mexican curator and photographer Pablo Ortiz Monasterio to inventory the collection and catalog 240 images to create the Frida Kahlo: Her Photos exhibition.  The exhibit’s ONLY American appearance is at Artisphere, so you must check it out before March 25th!

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