Arts & Entertainment

Immersive exhibition takes Mexicans into the heart of Frida Kahlo

By Ines Amarelo

Mexico City, Jul 6 (EFE).- A floor of white sand, walls that blend together, textured curtains, projections, and the words of artist Frida Kahlo in writing and in audio make up an immersive digital experience that opened Tuesday in the Mexican capital.

“I believe that the value of a piece of art takes on another meaning and another dimension when you know where it comes from,” Kahlo’s great-grandniece, Frisa Hentschel, told EFE.

“So of course, we know these obstacles that Frida has survived and that part of her history that is very famous, but there is a familiar part that we know, that not everyone knows and that gives another dimension to all her work, to all her history.”

On the painter’s 114th birth anniversary, the exhibition at the Frontón México seeks to disseminate the “true” life story of Frida.

“What we want is … to make known, not the Frida who suffered, but the one we know and the one we love,” said Mara de Anda, another great-grandniece.

One of the flagship artists of Mexico, Kahlo was born in Coyoacán, in the south of the capital and was rooted in the same place throughout her life. She conquered not only Mexicans, but the world with her work – and above all, with the way she lived her life.

Recognition of her has continued to grow and the younger generations can find in this experience a modernized way to discover her work.

“It (the exhibition) is very good because there are many young people who do not know her work and it is an interesting way to make her known,” said visitor Laura at the opening.

“Me and My Parrots” and “The Broken Column” are some of the 26 works by Kahlo (1907-1954) that come to life through more than 90 projectors and more than 50 speakers that complement the images with compositions of original music made by women interpreters of regional and traditional Mexican music.

Various textures and permeable walls can also be found in “Frida, the immersive experience” that allow the discovery of alternate spaces, since the exhibition has a non-fixed structure and visitors can go in the order and direction they want.

The main room is where visitors enter the world of her paintings, how she is at her core, representing Frida’s heart, where her feelings are born.

Likewise, there is an interactive art room where attendees can paint and draw digitally, and a game room where attendees can choose characters from Frida’s work that they feel represent them.

“It is a different way of seeing art, of feeling it. You can capture many details, small details that perhaps in a work as such can go unnoticed. It incorporates her music and you become aware of all the feelings involved,” said Mara Romeo Kahlo, her great niece.

“This is modern technology, and she, who was so avant-garde, I believe that the two things combine very well.”

Everything is complemented with an app that explains every detail, so the experience is designed for people of all ages and the duration of the tour is between 45 and 90 minutes, at the visitor’s choice.

“She was always a woman well ahead of her time for this feminist movement that has been going on since then, and is now gaining much more strength. I think that Frida is a symbol that fought against the standards that existed at that time for women,” Hentschel said.

The exhibition will be open to the public from Tuesday to Sunday for the next few weeks.

The Ocesa group, Cocolab and part of Frida’s family worked together on the project. EFE


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