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It is among the most hotly-anticipated exhibitions to come to the UK in recent years and is set to open at the V&A in South Kensington this month. Frida Kahlo: Making Her Self Up will be the first display of the Mexican artist’s possessions outside of her home country and represents an intriguing look into her life and style.

The artist, who was famous for her self-portraits and experimentation with styles, including magical realism, primitivism and cubism, died in 1954, but her influence continues to this day. Known for her vibrant sense of style and always wearing fresh flowers in her hair, she was one of the most colourful characters of the 20th century.

Among the highlights of the exhibition are traditional huipil dresses worn by Kahlo, with their intricate stitching and embroidery. There are nail polish bottles, tubes of lipstick and blusher compacts that she used to create her iconic style, as well as photos of her over the years.

The artist’s creativity knew no bounds and when she had her leg amputated in 1953, as the result of childhood polio and a streetcar accident, she ensured that her prosthetic limb was as colourful as the rest of her attire. It can be seen, clad in a red boot alongside other exhibits at the V&A.

Kahlo lived at a property known as La Casa Azul in Mexico City for much of her life and it has become the Frida Kahlo Museum. Up until 2004, the most personal items belonging to the artist were kept hidden away in the house’s bathroom on the orders of Kahlo’s husband Diego Rivera.

Opening up this collection and cataloguing it has given valuable insight into Kahlo, her life and style for scholars and fans. Now, some 200 of these items have been loaned to the V&A for this groundbreaking exhibition. They can be seen in context of her art, with many of her key self-portraits being displayed alongside her possessions.

Don’t miss out on the chance to see this eagerly-anticipated exhibition

Frida Kahlo: Making Her Self Up will run from June 16th to November 4th, with tickets for non-members costing £15. Advanced booking is recommended as this exhibition is expected to sell out. Take the hassle out of a visit to the V&A by travelling in a private coach and enjoy a relaxed day soaking up the culture.


Photo credit: iStock/thehague

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