In the neighbourhood of Coyoacán is Frida Kahlo’s ‘Casa Azul’, the cobalt blue house where the artist was born and spent most of her life.
We were there many years ago when the artist was mostly unknown north of the Mexican border. Photos of the house were not allowed so that all we have of that visit was a sliver of the blue wall that surrounds the home.
Since then she has been discovered and is now almost a cult figure. A line-up snaked along the sidewalk but fortunately moved relatively quickly, and this time photography was allowed for an extra fee.
My favourite part was of the house were the gardens arranged in a series of courtyards.
The plantings cast magical shadows on the blue exterior walls.When she married the famous muralist Diego Rivera he moved in, paid off the mortgage and built an extension. The couple collected many pre-hispanic artworks such as these reliefs embedded in the walls of their home.Pre-hispanic sculpture of lava stone on a ledge made of the same stone.
There were other colours than that eyeball-searing blue. This window shows the dark red and the green trim on a window looking out onto the garden.This was part of the extension that Diego had built, surfaced with lava stone and decorated with shells and small pots along with niches for their pre-hispanic statue collection.In one part of the garden a dark red and gold pyramid presides.Lava skull on the dark red wall of the pyramid.
Mosiac tiled pool with frog designs.It was here she recuperated from her childhood illness of polio and later from an accident with a trolley bus that left her in constant pain. It was here that she painted her passionate and painful portraits. It was here that she lived with Diego for many years and he was the one that donated the building to be turned into a museum in honour of his late wife.