Frida Kahlo (July 6, 1907 – July 13, 1954) was a Mexican artist mostly known for her self-portraits. Around the age of 18, Frida was terribly injured in a bus accident, and it was during her recovery that she started painting, although this was not the first art form she practiced.
Her paintings blend her pain and struggles with the vibrant colors and motifs of Mexican popular culture. Life was not kind to Frida. At the age of six she contracted polio, a condition that made one of her legs shorter and thinner than the other. She was bullied by her peers, and the disease isolated her for long periods of time. After the bus accident, she suffered multiple fractures of her spine, foot, pelvis, collarbone, ribs, and her shoulder was dislocated. She nearly lost her life, and needed over 30 surgeries.
The atmosphere in her parents’ house was also very tense, lacking love, and as she later described it “very, very sad”. As if all this was not enough, she had a turbulent marriage, and also miscarried, causing her a serious hemorrhage that kept her in the hospital for weeks.
After all this, she managed to turn excruciating pain into beauty and her passion stands out in every single one of her paintings — making her an appreciated and celebrated artist all over the world.
Here are 17 Frida Kahlo quotes to inspire you to carry on and transform pain into grace and beauty:
Feet, what do I need you for when I have wings to fly?
I paint flowers so they will not die.
I love you more than my own skin.
I was a child who went about in a world of colors… My friends, my companions, became women slowly; I became old in instants.
My painting carries with it the message of pain.
I am in agreement with everything my father taught me and nothing my mother taught me.
They thought I was a Surrealist, but I wasn’t. I never painted dreams. I painted my own reality.
The most important part of the body is the brain. Of my face, I like the eyebrows and eyes.
At the end of the day, we can endure much more than we think we can.
Nothing is absolute. Everything changes, everything moves, everything revolves, everything flies and goes away.
Nothing is worth more than laughter. It is strength to laugh and to abandon oneself, to be light. Tragedy is the most ridiculous thing.
I think that little by little I’ll be able to solve my problems and survive.
I tried to drown my sorrows, but the bastards learned how to swim, and now I am overwhelmed by this decent and good feeling.
You deserve the best, the very best, because you are one of the few people in this lousy world who are honest to themselves, and that is the only thing that really counts.
Take a lover who looks at you like maybe you are a bourbon biscuit.
Pain, pleasure and death are no more than a process for existence. The revolutionary struggle in this process is a doorway open to intelligence.
I am that clumsy human, always loving, loving, loving. And loving. And never leaving.
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