Frida Kahlo’s relative to speak about famed artist’s legacy at MSU


EAST LANSING — Since January, the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University has presented visitors an intimate view into the end of legendary Mexican painter Frida Kahlo’s life.

Next week, the museum will host two speaking events at which attendees can hear directly from members of Kahlo’s extended family about the painter’s life.

Artist and co-curator Cristina Kahlo, Frida Kahlo’s grandniece, and Juan Coronel Rivera, grandson of fellow famed painter and Kahlo’s husband Diego Rivera, will discuss art and family in two separate talks June 29 and 30, both at 6 pm, at the Broad . Both events are free, but pre-registration is required.

“Kahlo Without Borders” has been open to Broad visitors since Jan. 15, and will run through Aug. 7. The exhibition share slices of Kahlo’s personal and artistic world through photographs of her and her family; medical documentation from her stay at a Mexico City hospital; correspondence between the artist and her family, friends and doctors; and Cristina Kahlo’s photography.

The exhibit includes photographs of hospital gowns Kahlo wore, marked with paint splotches from the artist cleaning her brushes on them while she worked in bed.

A photograph of the hospital gown worn by Frida Kahlo while recuperating, showing paint brush stains Tuesday, June 21, 2022.

The exhibit, which includes 95 different pieces, also features a family tree that draws lines between the artist and Cristina Kahlo. Rivera’s grandmother was not Kahlo. Diego Rivera was married multiple times before and after his two marriages to Kahlo.

A family tree and timeline of Frida Kahlo on display at the Broad Museum Tuesday, June 21, 2022.

The exhibit was curated by Cristina Kahlo, Javier Roque Vázquez Juárez, and Broad Executive Director Mónica Ramírez-Montagut.

More on art in Greater Lansing:

Shaping an artistic identity: A look at where you can find public art in the Lansing area

Lansing River Trail public art exhibition, ArtPath, returns for fifth year

Frida Kahlo’s life was shaped by her physical ailments.

At 6 years old, she contracted polio. At 18, Kahlo was in a tram when it turned over, an incident that deeply impacted the rest of her life. According to the Broad exhibition, she was unable to walk for several months and ultimately underwent 32 tours.