Frida Kahlo & Diego Rivera at AGNSW

Frida Kahlo was an incredibly talented artist with an intensely sad life story.
Diego Rivera was a painter whose work was politically charged and very influential in the art world.

Together, they were a talented pair that brought the world’s attention to Mexican art and culture.
The combining of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera’s works created emphasis on their love story, rather than their work as individuals. Frida and Diego, though divorced and re-married, considered each-other the love of their lives – and the photos and letters shown in this exhibition at the AGNSW show that very clearly. By learning about the artists themselves, you gain a much clearer understanding of why they devoted so much of their life to their work – and why their work was so powerful.

There have been two great accidents in my life. One was the trolley, and the other was Diego. Diego was by far the worst.
– Frida Kahlo.

Frida Kahlo’s Famous Portraits

You may know Frida Kahlo as the woman with the monobrow and the light moustache, or you may know her as the woman who painted mostly self portraits. Both are true, but those things weren’t what defined her, or her work. The work of Frida was so special because she not only devoted her life to it, but she shared so much of herself through her work. It is a treat for any art lover to see these works up close; the technical skill shown in the paintings and drawings are amazing, as you would expect from such a well-respected artist.

You can read more about Frida Kahlo’s life and artistic timeline here.

Diego Rivera

You can’t talk about Frida without mentioning Diego, because he was such a strong influence in her life, and despite any turbulence in their relationship, they were great supporters of each other’s artistic works.

Diego Rivera was best know as one of Mexico’s greatest painters and muralists. Like Picasso, he was an artist very involved in politics. His work was strongly influenced by Post-Impressionism, Cubism, and modern art movements of the time (early 1900s.) Rivera was influenced by the likes of Paul Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gaugin and El Greco – which is clear to see when you examine his work.

“Inspired by the political ideals of the Mexican Revolution (1914-15) and the Russian Revolution (1917), Rivera wanted to make art that reflected the lives of the working class and native peoples of Mexico”
– Quoted from a Diego Rivera Biography on biography.com.

You can read more about Diego Rivera’s story here and view some of his famous murals here.

Photographs

Throughout the gallery space, there are not only paintings, but walls full of photos. The photos detailed the great love story, as well as the heartaches, in Frida and Diego’s lives together and apart. The photos are accompanied by a timeline on the opposite walls, filled with quotes and details about both artists’ lives, which helps the viewer gain a deeper understanding of the art.

If you’re interested in seeing some beautiful oil paintings, reading poignant quotes on life and suffering, and learning a little more about two artists with amazing life stories – you should definitely buy a ticket to see this excellent collection of work.

You can see more of Frida’s masterpieces, and learn more about individual works, by clicking here.

The Frida Kahlo & Diego Rivera exhibition at the Art Gallery of NSW is on until the 23rd of October, 2016. You can read about the show and buy tickets by following this link to AGNSW’s website.
Adult ticket prices are $18 each – $16 for concession tickets. 

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