September 27th, 2018



Shopkeeper: Can I help you?
Frida Kahlo: I'm just brows-ing.

I wonder when the Frida Kahlo-isation of our culture first took serious hold? Not that I particularly object to it: I can see that, now Che Guevara's star has waned, there is a (counter-)cultural niche to be filled. And who better than Kahlo, with her take-me-as-I-am stare and striking looks? That she also had Trotsky a lodger certainly doesn't make her less cool.

I've known of her for a long time, in fact since the days when she was mostly spoken as Diego Rivera's partner ("Who he?" quoth the Zeitgeist), but I've only recently become aware of Kahlo merch in almost every shop, at least in Bristol and Brighton. Is it a recent phenomenon - and if so, what triggered it? Or has it been building slowly, and I've only just noticed, parboiled frog as I am?