A Few Small Nips (1935) by Frida Kahlo

A Few Small Nips - Frida Kahlo - 1935

Artwork Information

TitleA Few Small Nips
ArtistFrida Kahlo
MediumOil on Metal
Dimensions30 x 40 cm
Art MovementNaïve Art (Primitivism)
Current LocationDolores Olmedo Collection, Mexico City, Mexico

About A Few Small Nips

The artwork “A Few Small Nips” was created by Frida Kahlo in 1935. This genre painting, executed in oil on metal, measures 30 x 40 cm and is currently housed in the Dolores Olmedo Collection in Mexico City, Mexico. The piece is associated with the Naïve Art movement, specifically Primitivism, which often features a conscious rejection of formal artistic techniques in favor of a more natural and untrained style.

In “A Few Small Nips,” the artwork depicts a tragic scene with emotionally charged content. A distraught woman lies on a blood-stained bed, her body marked by numerous wounds, suggesting an act of extreme violence against her. Standing beside the bed is a male figure, seemingly nonchalant, gazing outwards toward the viewer with a detached expression. His clothes are spattered with blood, implicating him in the gruesome scene. Above the figures, a banner reads in Spanish “Unos cuantos piquetitos”, which translates to “Just a few small nips”, a chillingly ironic comment presumably representing the perpetrator’s minimization of the assault.

The composition is framed by an orange border, and at the edges, there are more bloodstains symbolically continuing the painting beyond its central panel, giving the impression that the violent incident cannot be contained. This artwork, like much of Kahlo’s oeuvre, is emotionally powerful and deeply personal, often interpreting her own suffering through metaphorical and literal representations.

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