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Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo – from Mexico to Milan

Frida Kahlo – From Mexico to Milan

Frida Kahlo was a fascinating woman and an original artist. Her works are as colourful as her native Mexico,  but they also have strong autobiografical elements, representing a sort of sincere, disarming diary of her life. And what a life!

Self-portrait, 1940

Self-portrait, 1940

The best way to get to know this remarkable figure of the past century is to visit the recently opened exhibitionFrida Kahlo – Beyond the myth“, at Mudec in Milan, which lays bare Frida’s soul through her oils, drawings, watercolours, letters and photographs.

Frida Kahlo was born Magdalena Carmen Frieda Calderon in 1907 to a Hungarian/German-Jewish father and a mother of Spanish and Mexican Indian descent. Later, Frida proudly claimed to have changed the German spelling of her name from “Frieda” to “Frida”.

Becoming a painter was not a part of Frida’s career goals, yet her dream of becoming a doctor vanished when, at the age of 18, she suffered a tragic car accident that devastated her body. During her convalescence, Frida began to take painting seriously “to combat the boredom and pain” she said. Over the next three decades, she would produce a relatively small yet consistent and arresting body of work. She developed a sort of folkloric style of painting, quite unique, both drawing from the popular artistic tradition of her country and also reflecting the influence of her husband Diego Rivera, a celebrated Mexican muralist.

The wounded deer, 1946

The wounded deer, 1946

All her works, meticulously painted, somehow captures the multifaceted aspects of her personality: the constant physical pain she endured all her life; her inability to have children; the emotional distress caused by her turbulent relationship with Rivera; her political activism.

But what will strike visitors will be the extraordinary mix of sensuality, wit and irony that her paintings reveal. In spite of her lifelong physical ordeals, her work is a hymn to life and to the unstoppable force of nature.

During these cold grey February days, an exhibition that will lift the spirit!

 

February 21st, 2018

 

Lu' Bar at Gam

Art, beauty and a cup of coffee

It’s a hard work being a tourist, but who else is more entitled to enjoying a perfect combination of art, beauty and a cup of coffee than a visitor to Milan? So head straight to one of the elegant cafeterias  housed in some of the best museums of our city.

Villa Necchi Campiglio - swimming pool

Villa Necchi Campiglio – swimming pool

Our favourite is the cafe’ of Villa Necchi Campiglio, a jewel of the Thirties formerly owned by one of the richest Italian families. Sip your espresso while sitting by the swimming pool and enjoying the view of the park, and feel as if you were a character from the movie “I am love“, starring Tilda Swinton and shot precisely in this mansion, nestled in the heart of Milan.
Director Wes Anderson is the creative genius who designed Bar Luce. Located in glamorous Fondazione Prada, it will turn the gloomiest, November day into a joyful experience. Remenber the pastel coloured, vintage look of Anderson’s movies? You’ll start believing you are on the set of one of them. Enjoy a glass of amaro liqueur at a table next to the pinball machine, and then deep dive into one of the amazing exhibits of Fondazione Prada, which is housed in a former distillery dramatically renovated by starchitect Rem Koolhaas.
Bar Luce at Fondazione Prada

Bar Luce at Fondazione Prada

Galleria d’Arte Moderna (Gam) is a picture gallery focused on the 18th and 19th centuries. The building, Villa Belgiojoso Bonaparte, is a fine example of Neoclassical architecture, and its cafeteria, Lu’ Bar, enjoys a splendid view of the facade. Full of plants, embellished with wrought-iron details, and inundated with light, Lu’ Bar looks like a charming, old fashioned conservatory. Try the local speciality, typical Sicilian street food, with a pint of artisan beer. 

Finally Mudec, Museum of Cultures, housed in a daring brand new building, with a bistrot that is the perfect place for a break in your busy day. Loads of press at your disposal, plenty of room, and affordable prices, even though the chef in charge is the same of the restaurant upstairs, blessed with 2 Michelin stars.