Frida Kahlo: Life of an Icon
A massive multi-sensory Frida Kahlo exhibition is coming to Australia as part of Sydney Festival 2023.
October 20, 2022
If Vincent van Gogh can do it, and Claude Monet and his contemporaries like Renoir, Cézanne and Manet as well, then Frida Kahlo can also. We're talking about being the subject of huge, multi-sensory art exhibitions — the kind that takes an artist's work and projects it all around you so you feel like you're walking into their paintings.
First came Van Gogh Alive, which has been touring the country for the last few years. On its way next is Monet & Friends Alive, launching at Melbourne's digital-only gallery The Lume at the end of October. And, after that, Frida Kahlo: Life of an Icon is heading to Sydney as part of the hefty Sydney Festival program for 2023.
Frida Kahlo: Life of an Icon will make its Australian premiere in the Harbour City — and display only in the Harbour — from Wednesday, January 4, 2023. For two months, it will celebrate the Mexican painter's life and work, taking over the Cutaway at Barangaroo Reserve with holography and 360-degree projections. The aim: turning a biographical exhibition about Kahlo into an immersive showcase, and getting attendees to truly understand her art, persistence, rebellion and skills — and why she's an icon.
Visitors will wander through seven spaces, and get transported into the artist's work — including via virtual reality. That VR setup will indeed let you step inside Kahlo's pieces as much as VR can, although the entire exhibition is designed to cultivate that sensation anyway, with digital versions of Kahlo's paintings expanding across every surface.
The showcase hails from Spanish digital arts company Layers of Reality, alongside the Frida Kahlo Corporation, and will feature historical photographs and original films as well — and live performances of traditional Mexican music.
As part of the interactive component, attendees will also be able to make their own flower crowns, and turn their own drawings into Kahlo-style artworks. And, you'll be able to immortalise the experience in souvenir photos, too.