Of course we all know Facebook is the fount of all evil, but this week I saw a post from a friend, which was sort of a chain letter that didn't make me want to pick out my eyes with rocks. It was a call to occupy Facebook with art

The post was a picture of Jake and Dinos Chapman's The Sum of alll Evil. The piece is as awesome as it is horrific, so I clicked like (as is the parlance) and commented my approval. However, my comment was then replied to, informing me I had been given Frida Kahlo.


Re-reading the initial post explained that by liking it, I consented to taking part in a sort of cultural sit-in. Not being a huge fan of Kahlo, I'm not very familiar with her work. She's the self-portrait lady, yeah?

I did some google research and found out a bit about her style and why she painted what she did. Started reading a bit of bio and before I knew what was going on I was learning about something. Something that wasn't javascript or CSS level 4 selectors and it was interesting, damnit.

I eventually settled on this:

Weeping Coconuts (Cocos gimientes) by Frida Kahlo (1951)

I chose this because it's supposed to be very sad; As Kahlo got older she turned away from self-portraits and started painting still life. This was possibly due to the affect of prescription medication had on her ability to paint with the detail she'd used to ^1. Kahlo thought they would sell quicker and she and her husband, Diego Rivera, needed money to pay her medical bills ^2. However, despite this tragic tale, nothing about the actual image seems sad to me. In fact, a crying coconut seems absurdly funny.

It was painted as a gift to a friend, Elena Boder. Boder didn't like it and returned it, expecting Kahlo to offer her another one. She didn't. She just painted over the "For Elena Boder" bit and sold it ^3. Hence the message on the finished piece saying "Painted with great affection. Frida Kahlo"

Clearly an excellent sense of humour.

Header image attributed to velovotee from The Commons on Flickr