The well-known artist, Frida Kahlo, is known for her captivating self-portraits that often tell a timeless story about her struggles and emotions. Her Self-Portrait With A Velvet Dress (1926) was painted during an important time of transition in the artist’s life. The physical and emotional self-reflection is seen throughout this painting, as it embodies her journey to womanhood.
Kahlo gives us a glimpse of herself that influences the work of other renowned artists like Parmigianino or Modigliani. She shows us the emotional energy and turmoil present in her life with use of powerful symbols like her deep eyes, lush hair, and velvet dress. According to Catherine Llorens-Garcia, “this self-portrait was created during a period when Kahlo reevaluated ideas and evaluated relationships”. As she painted it for her now boyfriend, Alejandro Gómez Arias at the time, we can see how it explains why such strong emotion is embedded into this work of art.
This is one of the many fascinating self-portraits that Frida Kahlo produced during her lifetime. She followed up this artwork with another portrait, Self Portrait With The Portrait Of Doctor Farill (1951). This painting gave us another insight into Kahlo’s struggle as she found consolation in gaining back some physical abilities from being bedridden from 1950 to 1951 due to her health issues. Both paintings showcase how powerful Frida Kahlo truly was with emotion and artistic talent.