Friday, January 21, 2005

Her Own Skin

By coincidence, at Beyond The Sunrise Maita has a lovely meditation on how "poets, artists, musicians all try to dance around and beyond form". She prefaces it with a quote from John Berger's essay on Frida Kahlo from his collection The Shape Of A Pocket. Berger reflects on Frida's method as one that brings pain to the surface. She liked to paint on metal, for its skin-like smoothness. And in the passage Maita refers to he shows how Frida's art literally emerged from the excruiciating experience of pain:
In a comparable way, when she painted her pictures, it was as ifshe was drawing, painting or writing words on her own skin. If this were to happen there would be a double sensitivity, because the surface would also feel what the hand was tracing - the nerves of both leading to the same cerebral cortex... With her small brushes, fine as eyelashes, and with her meticulous strokes, every image she made, as soon as she fully became the painter Frida Kahlo, aspired to the sensibility of her own skin. A sensibility sharpened by her desire and exacerbated by her pain.
Read the rest.


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