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Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo: Icons of Modern Mexican Art

In this course, we will track the dual story of the lives and works of a most extraordinary couple, Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo, whose intense engagement in art, politics, and personal exploration, especially in the case of Kahlo’s highly personal paintings, has become legendary. We will trace Rivera’s career from his early years in Mexico, through his modernist period in Paris, to his return to Mexico and his iconic career as a muralist, focusing on his murals in the Preparatoria, the chapel at Chapingo, the Ministry of Education, and the National Palace in Mexico City. Meanwhile, we will trace the early life of Kahlo, including the physical and mental repercussions from her bout with polio and an accident that nearly killed her. While Mexico is the center of their lives and work, their adventures in “Gringolandia” (the United States) also have particular interest, especially the famous scandal of the aborted mural in Rockefeller Center. Classroom slide lectures are supplemented by film clips from documentary and feature films, including Tim Robbins’ Cradle Will Rock and Julie Taymor’s Frida.

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You'll Walk Away with

  • Increased familiarity with the lives and works of Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo
  • An understanding of how their artwork both influenced and documented the events of their time and their personal struggles

Ideal for

  • The curious and creative
  • Art enthusiasts and history buffs
NO open sections available for this course at the moment. Please check back next semester.