nervousmotion artworks blog

Frida @ SF MoMA!

Any Bay-Area Frida lovers reading this should be sure to catch the Frida Kahlo exhibit at SF MoMA before it leaves town on the 28th! Were I on the left-coast, I would sure make a pilgrimage there myself.


Another Frida sighting.

This time in the Back Bay Borders. She’s all the rage. I’m cataloging these just because I find it endlessly fascinating *which* women artists are considered “safe” for public consumption. Frida Kahlo was a disabled, drug-addicted communist and yet, we’re selling her work and her image like hotcakes! It goes against everything that she herself stood for, but we don’t care! She was “primitive” and “primal” and that means something to us in some sort of disconnected and sanitized way. You can like Frida Kahlo and feel that it means that you have an appreciation for art, that you are “multi-cultural.”

I could go on a similar rant about Salvador Dalí and how anyone between the ages of 18 to 25 who claims to be “really into art” and “surrealism” has a Salvador Dalí poster because they think he’s so clever. But that’s all I’m going to say. I’m way less interested in Dalí because his art doesn’t really do much for me. Frida… on the other hand… I find her endlessly fascinating, which is why I’m endlessly fascinated with the way that she’s promoted by the American capitalist machine.


When I was in pTown, I saw a boatload of Frida-related merch. I guess Ms. Kahlo is enjoying an surge of popularity related to the bio-pic with Salma Hayek a few years ago and the various exhibitions surrounding her centennial. I have to wonder though how she feels about boho urbanites decorating their homes with her visage on their throw pillows. Given her criticisms of the consumer-driven capitalist American money-making machine, I can’t imagine she would be pro.

And oh, wow, a google search for Frida related imagery brought up this piece by artist Trek Thunder Kelly. While I do admire the gender-bending, again, I can’t imagine Frida enjoying being the “face” of Calvin Klein men’s briefs – but perhaps that’s the whole point.