Ishiuchi Miyako Photographs the Once Hidden Belongings of Frida Kahlo

Ishiuchi Miyako Frida

Ishiuchi Miyako Frida

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London’s Michael Hoppen Gallery exhibits “Frida” an exhibition by renowned Japanese photographer, Ishiuchi Miyako.

In photographing what were once hidden belongings of legendary artist, Frida Khalo, Miyako illustrates the hardship of physical disability and beautifully celebrates the richness of Mexican culture. The photographed belongings were locked a way in a room by Khalo’s husband, Diego Riviera after his wife passed in 1954. He insisted the room remain locked until he too had passed away. Decades later, the Museo Frida Khalo commissioned Miyako to document the once secret belongings of the artistic icon whose paintings have been a representation of feminity and feminism for decades.

Beholding pictures of Kahlo’s clothes, shoes and intimate items, emotions of admiration and compassion intertwine. Nervous knots slowly  form in my throat as I imagine the suffering of the famed mexican painter, photographs of back supports and uneven shoes document her agonising spinal problems that her multiple surgeries could not fully repair. My nervous knots were soothed by the magnificently vibrant colours that adorned Kahlo’s dresses. That is how I continued a knot would form and then beauty would dissolve it.

Miyako poetically portrays the life of a resilient woman through an intimate documentation of her personal items


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