The Spark of Diego & Frida: “The Art Gallery of Ontario’s new exhibit, Frida & Diego: Passion, Politics and Painting, exposes the burning passion of the worlds of Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo. Rivera’s grandiose work once overshadowed the intimate oeuvre of Kahlo, but now the tables have turned. Alina Kulesh wanders down their artistic path, learning that opposites do attract – both in love and in art.” (The Genteel)

Art Gallery of Ontario’s new exhibit, Frida & Diego: Passion, Politics and Painting, does not disappoint. The two artists are extremely fascinating in their own right, together they feed off of each other’s brilliance and passion, creating one dynamic exhibition.

Prior to visiting the exhibit, I was very familiar with Frida’s work and knew what to expect; I was not as familiar with Diego’s work and secretly learned how to hate him for his insensitivity towards Frida, his wife. I was definitely on team Frida. But AGO’s exhibit allowed me to grow a bigger appreciation for Diego, the artist; AGO’s exhibit illustrates his progression as an artist and the abudance of influence he had throughout his carrer, his work is stunning.

Yet, I can’t stop thinking about Frida and Diego as people, as a couple. Their relationship was so tremulous and passionate — in every sense of the word — that it distracts me from their work. How could two people, that wanted to be together and claimed to love each other so much, be so toxic to one another? Often we fall in love with a person out of our own Ego–that is, the initial attraction occurs and continues to build based on the fact that the individual seems himself or herself in the other person. So could this be the case? Could Frida have fallen in love with established and worldly Diego because she saw her own passions in him? And could Diego have fallen in love with young and ambitious Frida because he saw himself in her?

If you look closely at the paintings featured in the exhibit you can tell that the toxicity of their relationship served them both well in their careers. After all, how are we to create if we feel calmness or nothing?

You can read my full article on the artists & AGO’s exhibit here.


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