Thursday, December 30, 2010

Frida and Diego

Newly opened at the Pera Museum is an exhibit of paintings by the Mexican artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. The pieces on exhibit are part of the Gelman collection. The Gelman's lived in Mexico for a number of years, were art collectors, and became friends with Frida and Diego. The majority of their life collection was donated to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and a smaller portion to the Mexican National Cultural Heritage. On display are pieces donated to Mexico. The Gelmans knew and admired Diego and when Mrs. Gelman was introduced to Frida and saw this self portrait with Diego on her mind, she purchased it immediately, and became an instant admirer of Frida and her work.
Diego is most famous for his mural work, none of which from this collection left Mexico. There were some large canvases, including "Calla Lily Vendors".
Both Frida and Diego were commissioned to paint portraits of Natasha Gelman in 1943. Frida portrait is small and very precise. The fur collar looked soft to the touch, which of course, I didn't. Diego's canvas was large, with the full body painted and calla lilies in the background. Here is a closeup of just the face. Both paintings were lovely and drew your eyes to them.
"Girl with Gloves" is a watercolor done by Diego with lots of character.

This is the first time Frida and Diego have been exhibited in Turkey and a special treat for all of us living in Istanbul at this time. Many Spanish speaking visitors were at the museum as well as a large group of students from one of the universities with a robust art program. The exhibit continues until March 20, 2011.

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