Frida's Birthday weekend was a blast! It began with First Friday, getting to seeing all my friends and making new ones. Denver is so supportive of the arts, and for Denver, the Arts are collaborative. We are stronger united then divided. Perhaps that is why we all live here or so many wish to live here. I am reminded of Frida as I write this post, she was a strong believer in the chicano spirit of collaboration and a united people.
Of course, there were multiple galleries and museos to celebrate Frida. For First Friday, Museo De Las Americas had a beautiful display of Chicano Culture with the icon of proud and strong female artists to lead the way. The next day was my first Demo Day at the Denver Art Museum. I had also signed up for the Frida Kahlo Look Alike contest at the Celebration of the Life of Frida Kahlo event July 8 and had one of my nichos hung in the art show. I really was looking forward to dressing like Frida, I knew I would look good.
Looking ahead for the day, the model sign in was at 3:30 at the Westwood Food Coop off Morrison road between Federal and Sheridan. I was done at the Art Museum by 3 pm. With timing looking the way it did, I decided to go partially dressed as Frida to the Denver Art Museum. Everyone loved my flower crown and Maria Lopez said it invited people over to see me. Maria Lopez was such a huge help that day. We visited with many art viewers, being First Saturday: the Denver Art Museum Free Admission Day.
Once 3 pm rolled around, Maria and I headed over the Westwood Creative District. I ate lunch while Maria drove and bumped the Mexican Polka music. Between the music and my bad directions, our drive was something straight out of a comedy! We arrived at the Westwood Co-op to a full crowd and the most incredible music. The Westwood Co-op is super cool and radically self-sustaining. The gardens in the back make up a large urban farm, classes for little kids and adults, art gallery, grocery store, and a warehouse scheduled to be artist studios in several months.
The Life and Celebration of Frida Khalo Festival was a fantastic event. Many vendors and activities, music and food. By 4:30 pm, model sign in officially began! I filled out the questionaire asking to explain my connection to Mrs. Khalo. Frida has always been a part of my life. Her iconic portraits stood proud in the library of Whittier Elementary in Boulder. We studied her art at Casey Middle School and learned who she was and her name. By high school I had several Tuscan books of her art, to study her story and technique. Of course, I owned the DVD once the movie Frida came out. Frida, like myself, was a such a strong individual, she had patience, creativity, and courage. Her struggles were not unlike ours, though ours may not be identical, she is a beacon of love and creativity to heal the most incredible pain. This is universal and she is a pillar of that understanding.
The judges called us all up, one at a time. Based on last year's winner, I didn't realize ANYONE could enter into the contest!!! The competition got tougher with each little Frida, some young as 3 years, were explaining to a hot and crowded room of viewers why they were inspired by Frida. Yes, Frida is that inspiring, the power of Frida Khalo! By some miracle, as the judges began to call the winners, I took second place! I really looked so much like Frida!
All in all, it was a great day. I am so blessed to be on the path of the artist. This is my life, this is my karma. I am an artist, a strong woman, and an icon of creativity, just like my heroine, Frida Khalo.