Come June 2020, the Cleve Carney Museum of Art and the McAninch Arts Center are scheduled to host the largest Frida Kahlo exhibition in Chicago.
It’s been over 40 years since the works of a cultural icon and famed Mexican artist, Frida Kahlo, were on display in 1978. But the clock will reset in 2020 summer when an exhibition of the largest collection of works by Kahlo arrives at Glen Ellyn’s College of DuPage.
The 2020 exhibition will feature the selection of oil paintings and drawings by Kahlo, and they’ll include her major works throughout her career. On loan from Mexico’s Museo Dolores Olmedo in Xochimilco, these collections cover the artist’s childhood and personal life struggles. They’ll also explore the themes of identity, politics, sexuality, as well as death.
Kahlo explained that she “painted her reality” in the drawings: from her tumultuous relationship with Diego Rivera to her lifelong pain that stemmed from a childhood traumatic accident.
Alongside the 26-piece collection is an impressive exhibition that features a multimedia timeline of Kahlo’s life, a video presentation, reproductions of her clothing, and a “poetry garden” designed by Ball Horticultural Company.
Despite her death 65 years ago, Kahlo remains relevant and famous because many people can relate to how she dealt with issues of love, relationship, and health, Justin Witte, a curator of the Cleve Carney Art Gallery, revealed.
Speaking about the eagerly-awaited event, Witte said:
“In 2020, this entire campus is going to be transformed. The gallery is going to have an expansion built specifically to house this exhibition. The lobby of the art center itself will be transformed into a historical exhibition that will outline Frida’s story and her relevance.”
“But the most amazing thing that is going to happen is that all of you and thousands of other people are going to come to the College of DuPage, and they’re going to stand in front of Frida Kahlo’s paintings and time is going to start to bend. And they’re going to make that connection. And we are going to get to hear Frida Kahlo’s amazing story, as told by Frida Kahlo.”
Both Cleve Carney Museum and McAninch Arts Center will also host celebratory Kahlo-inspired events, leading up to the grand opening of the exhibition.
On February 16, 2020, the McAninch Arts Center will host the Ballet Folclórico de Mexico to share Mexican culture through dance. And on April 18 and 19, the museums will present A New Philharmonic, A Salute to Frida that’ll perform the music of Kahlo’s heritage.