Frida Kahlo | Her Photos at MOLAA

Written by and Photography by Charla in Art, Long Beach

Feeling artsy this weekend? Grab the kids and check out “Frida Kahlo, Her Photos”, at the Long Beach Museum of Latin American Art, or MOLAA. Luckily, Los Angeles County is full of opportunities to get your art on, and you can even find something kid-friendly and make them think, all at once. Be sure that MOLAA is high on your list when you want to check out world-class art and get your kids into some culture, all before lunch.


Frida Kahlo’s turbulent life was marked by tragedy, history, more tragedy and more history. Her paintings are full of symbols from traditional Mexican folklore and surreal images. They tell stories about her complicated relationship with her husband, the Mexican painter Diego Rivera, Mexican and global politics, and especially the tragic accident which left her body so broken that she required more than thirty surgeries and suffered bouts of pain for much of the rest of her life.

The Frida Kahlo exhibition at MOLAA tells the story of how she used photography to keep her personal history. She battled against loneliness and against her physical pain as she added stacks of photos of family, friends, lovers, Diego Rivera, her home – the Blue House (la casa azul) – and her observations of politics in Mexico.



Frida would crop some photos or write notes and dedications on others – adding something personal to the already personal act of taking pictures. From MOLAA’s website describing the exhibition:

Frida collected daguerreotypes and calling cards from the XIX century and kept photographs that she intervened upon — cutting things out from them, writing dedications on them and personalizing them as if they were paintings. For Frida, photography was a present among friends. It was relic for recalling her ancestors, a language for creating chance scenes, a means for posing and seeing herself portrayed, but above all, it was a working tool that inspired her artistic work.

“…a means for posing and seeing herself portrayed”. Yes, Frida took the original selfie before selfies were invented.

A selfie would be a perfect way to get kids interested in Frida’s art and her life. MOLAA finds clever ways to make the exhibition accessible to kids. At the entrance you will get a brochure full of games and activities for your kids to work through while you squint closely at the detail of Frida’s photos and read the notes that she wrote on some of them.

Your kids will stop at a table to write a get well card to Frida while she lays on her bed in a full body cast, recuperating from her accident. And if you happen to land at MOLAA on a Target Free Sunday then check the museum’s calendar and you may be able to see shows, music, dance, and other kid-friendly things to do.



The exhibition “Frida Kahlo, Her Photos” closes on June 8. If by some misfortune you miss this great show then add MOLAA’s website to your bookmarks and check back frequently for the next family-friendly event. Then run, don’t walk, with your kids to MOLAA and see why this museum has put Long Beach on the map for the art world’s next go-to spot.

Frida Kahlo, Her Photos

March 15 – June 8, 2014
Museum of Latin American Art
628 Alamitos Ave.
Long Beach, CA 90802

Call the museum or visit the website for hours, directions, and admission pricing.