Frida Kahlo

Topics: Self-portrait, Frida Kahlo, Mexico Pages: 5 (2007 words) Published: July 16, 2008
Psychological state describes the state of mind that we are under. Psychological state can take many forms such as manic, anxious, and depressive. In saying this, our psychological stater can influence things form day to day life. Throughout history events and objects have been reflective of the human psychological state. One of the most prominent subjects to psychological influence is art. Artist such as frida Kahlo, Salvador Dali and Vincent van gough, to name a few, are just some of the selections from art history that reveal their psychological states through their artworks. “State of mind takes a large part in my art, I think this accounts for most artists throughout history”-Salvador Dali.

Frida Kahlo, born July 6, 1907, was a Mexican painter, who achieved great popularity throughout her career. Frida, as well as being influenced by her culture, also had another major influence that sculpted the way her artworks were made, her psychological state.

There were many major event sin frida Kahlo’s life that effected her mental state but it all began with “the accident”. At the early age of 18, frida was involved in a bus accident that irreversibly changed her life. After the accident had occurred frida spent all her time painting. After three months of immobilisation frida had begun painting an array of different paintings, none of yet, that were of a psychologically revealing nature. Although this did not mean that this accident hadn’t affected her mental state at all.

In the years to come, frida embarked on many artistic projects, a lot of these being portraits. Although only portraits, these portraits strongly revealed her mental state at the time and the pain she had gone through. "I paint myself because I am often alone and I am the subject I know best". An example of a work that reflects this is Self-Portrait with Thorn Necklace and Hummingbird. Filled with a large pallet of symbols and meanings, this is one of fridas most prominent in revealing her psychological state. This very confronting artwork, as well as showing her pain and love for Mexico also reveals the painful events in her life that influenced her psychological state. This artwork, a swell as the symbols and meanings also has a confronting stance. Defying the rules of the portrait, instead of having an angled shot of frida, there is a front on shot. This position positions the viewer to feel confronted and shows that she feels that after the accident society sees her as a confronting women. As the accident restricted her from having a child (resulting in many miscarriages) the symbol of a monkey has been incorporated into the painting. The monkey symbolizes her as being infertile and not being able to have a child. This shows her desperate state of mind and that she wanted to have some sort of offspring/child. As well as this, there is a black cat positioned on her right shoulder. This cat, in this portrait is a symbol of witchcraft and bad luck. This symbol or motif are directly related to her accident. As she was catholic it was shun upon to not have a child. So the sue of this black cat reflects her disappointment in not being able to have a child, but also makes an avid reference to catholic history in the time of witch hunts. But as well as having negative references to her mental state, positives still maintain within the picture. The crown of thorns shows her feelings towards her catholic heritage and ho strongly she felt about her history.

The next major thing to happen in fridas life would be her marriage to Diego and the many mishaps to come. Their marriage on august 21st 1929 not only resulted in the to being in matrimony but also brought up controversy within fridas family. Fridas mother very much disapproved of the marriage stating that it is like “a dove marrying an elephant”. Despite this, frida and Diego believed that they were born for each other . Upon their marriage, frida painted many paintings that happily reflected her...
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