The exhibit, “Appearances Can Be Deceiving” in La Casa Azul, Museum of Frida Kahlo is a curated selection of Frida’s personal dresses, jewelry, shoes, accessories and even beauty items.
As a young girl, Frida suffered from Polio, which affected her right leg and eventually stunted it’s growth. She also suffered from a severe spinal injury (from a bus accident), which in turn led to many surgeries throughout her life trying to correct it and she had to wear a cast/back brace. She also had her right leg amputated right below the knee, due to gangrene.
“Appearances Can Be Deceiving” displays how Frida’s vibrant fashion style celebrated her culture while disguising physical conditions. Frida wore traditional Tehuana clothes (long dresses, skirts, blouses) and in-depth shoes to disguise the physical issues.
From what I learned while touring La Casa Azul, Diego Rivera (Frida’s husband) had locked Frida’s closet doors and banned entry to anyone, after he passed away, he had left one of his close friends in charge and made sure that the doors remained closed. His reasoning was that he didn’t want Frida’s personal belongings to be mistreated/damaged. Anyways, his friend decided that Frida’s closet was to be opened, only after she had died. She passed away in 2002, and the Museum of Frida Kahlo decided to open Frida’s closet doors years later…and it is only until last year that the public has been invited to browse some of her personal items on display in the exhibit, Appearances Can Be Deceiving.
I can only imagine how excited and emotional the individuals who sorted through Frida’s closet were. There was clothes, jewelry, love letters, sketches, perfume and even a bottle of Revlon nail laquer. Imagine being able to not only touch her personal belongings, but SMELL her essence? Must have been an out of this world moment.
I am thankful that I was able to feel her presence while exploring her home, La Casa Azul. Appearances Can Be Deceiving is a once in lifetime experience and is on display until November 2013.