Photo: Diane Kahlo is related to famed artist Frida Kahlo
After spending years trying to get out from under the shadow of Mexican cultural icon Frida Kahlo, American artist Diane Kahlo decided to devote her talent to painting subjects that her famous distant relative would have found compelling, such as the murders of women in Ciudad Juarez.
“I believe that Frida would be very interested in what is happening to women in Ciudad Juarez, and in everything to do with immigration and politics on the border,” Diane said in an interview with Efe.
“Wall of Memories: Las Desaparecidas de Cuidad Juarez” (“The Missing Women of Juarez”) is made up of 100 portraits and 50 symbols painted by Diane as a tribute to the more than 1,000 women and girls kidnapped or slain over the past 30 years in the city just across the border from El Paso, Texas.
The 61-year-old artist, whose grandfather was a cousin of Frida’s father, Wilhelm Kahlo, described her exhibition as a “reminder of the epidemic of violence against women and girls” that Mexico is going through.
While Diane describes her famous surname as “a double-edged sword,” it helped her career get off the ground in the 1960s when she studied art and painting at USC and got involved in the political activism of the Chicano movement.