Wednesday, July 7, 2010

the only thing i know

i dedicated myself earlier this year to exploring the concept of bravery. i have been thinking a lot about what it means to live thoughtfully, yet tenaciously and what it means to take the small and sometimes invisible steps towards a life lived boldly. yesterday marked the birthday of frida kahlo: mexican painter, cultural icon, and personal inspiration to yours truly.

i know that it is cliche to carry around frida paraphernalia. frida kahlo is to young female aspiring artisans and hipsters what hillary clinton has been to a generation of politicas. it is a cliche that i'm willing to embrace because for as long as i've loved art, i've loved frida kahlo.

i am drawn to her use of color and symbolism, but primarily i am fascinated by her obsession with the self. it is bold to make any piece of art. it takes a certain gumption and abandon to perceive, feel, and then respond through creation. however, i find that it is even more brave to recreate images of the self. frida's long term partner diego's revolution was on the streets; frida's revolution existed within her soul and body. it is brave to struggle and to look deeply within yourself and then even more flagrant to then share the raw internal truth with the world.

i do not love frida because she is a superior painter to others of her generation. i do not love her because she suffered and indeed i wish that her life had been full of sweetness. i love her because she was brave. i love her because she took what was graceful and what was awkward; she took what was broken and divine to reflect and transform herself.

frida said, "I paint my own reality. The only thing I know is that I paint because I need to, and I paint whatever passes through my head without any other consideration."

happy birthday frida. thank you for living boldly in your own reality...

it's a beautiful thing.


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