text roberto voorbij
Although Frida Kahlo died in the 1950’s her work and life are still inspiring artists from all over the world. Frida’s free spirit makes her a figurehead of feminism even today. Her tormented life story makes that her art touches so many people still. Not only artists or musicians, take for example bands as Florence and the machine and Coldplay who praise her as an inspiration, but also people from a totally different background are moved by this Mexican surrealist painter.
Commemorating Frida – last Friday was her 111th birthday and coming Friday it’s on the day 62 years ago she died – this weekend opened the inspiring group show ‘World of Frida’ at the Bedford Gallery in Walnut Creek, California. Bringing together 150 artists, through a combination of a juried open call and invitation. What stands out is the large amount of portraits of Kahlo, what comes as no surprise actually considering that of the 143 paintings of Frida Kahlo that remain 55 of them are self portraits. As well can her presence be defined as a work on its own. The in total 450 submissions for ‘World of Frida’ were juried by fine artist, illustrator and author Lisa Congdon and Rebecca Gomez, curator of exhibitions and programs at the Mexic-Arte Museum in Austin.
A first impression of some of the amazing works that are on show in this group exhibit – that will be on display from July 8 to September 16 – which is actually a double exhibition combined with ‘Frida Kahlo: Through the Lens of Nickolas Muray’ presenting some of the most beautiful and iconic photographs taken of this surrealist artist, shows an inspiring diversity. Ranging from the stunning water color by Misty Segura-Bowers to the meticulously fabricated quilt by Marverick Quilts. From the Teun Hocks like painterly photograph and reenactment of Kahlo’s ‘Self portrait with cropped hair’ by Adela Antoinette to the colorful woodcut by Rupert Garcia. Or the delicate Frida on a dollar bill by Martin Segobia, that will certainly upset the present president a bit more regarding Frida’s nationality and sex. Or turning Frida in a Roman Goddess by Staci Sterenberg by choosing mosaic as a medium laying bear her archetypical strength like an archaeological find. Or depicted as a modern suffragette holding a ‘torch of freedom’ in Yhoshua Gutierrez ‘Frida del Rey’. Of course I feel more than honored to have also contributed a piece to this wonderful and exciting group show with the digital collage ‘Portrait 39: Kahlo’.
‘World of Frida’ runs from July 8 to September 16, 2018 at the Bedford Gallery, CA.
Misty Segura-Bowers – water color painting, 6 x 6 inches (2017).
Anna Valdez ‘Windowsill’ – oil, acrylic and spray paint on canvas, 55 x 55 inches (2017).
Jennifer Shada ‘Bufanda de Seda’ – water color painting (2018).
Frida Kahlo ‘Self portrait with cropped hair’ (1940) & Adela Antoinette ‘F.Kahlo’.
Marverick Quilts (2018).
‘Frida Kahlo’ – woodcut, 35.5 x 24.5 inches (2002).
Yhoshua Gutierrez ‘Frida del Rey’ (2018) .
Jamie Burnside ‘Infestation’ – acrylic on board 21,5 x 17,5 inches (2018).
Carlyn Krall ‘Hungry for a Revolution’.
Roberto Voorbij ‘Portrait 39: Kahlo’ – Klein Imaging Smooth Rag 300gsm 15.8 H x 11.8 W inches (2018).