Self Portrait With Monkey1940 by Frida Kahlo
This self portrait was painted during Frida's one year divorce from her husband Diego. After returning from Paris in the Spring of 1939, her relationship with Diego became more distant. She left the house in San Angel and returned to live with her parents in the "Blue House" in Coyoacán. In October they mutually agreed to divorce and started divorce proceedings. The divorce was final in December. During the period following the divorce, Frida relied heavily on her pets for companionship. They were her husband and the children she knew by now that she could never have. In this painting, she appears with her pet monkey who clings to her like a surrogate child. The monkey is embracing her, his paw wrapped around her neck. Frida and her monkey are tethered by a deep red ribbon that wraps 4 times around her neck and then disappears behind the monkey's neck. However, this painting does not project a motherly, or even friendly feeling. The cold...
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