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Invitation to Paint on Frida's Cast/Corset

Frida Kahlo is a late female Mexican painter who discovered her talent while confined to a hospital bed after shattering her spine in a bus accident. Frida found her path & mission in life as a prolific modern artist. Not just her art, but also her life journey represents overcoming struggle & finding your power as an individual. After her life changing accident during her teenage years Kahlo wore plaster casts/corsets for most of her life because her spine was too weak to support itself. When she was in the casts/corsets she painted & covered them with pasted scraps of fabric, drawings of tigers, butterflies, monkeys, plumed birds, & streetcars like the one whose handrail rammed through her body when she was in the accidents. 

A lot of the books we have been reading show images of her in a body cast or corset which the children have been curious about. We set out an invitation to paint on a cast/corset by dressing a mannequin with a corset + texas coffee filters, tempera paint, & paint brushes and invited the children to transform it into something beautiful just like Frida did. 

All mediums & canvases of art support creativity to come naturally to all children because they encourage freedom of art expression. When it comes to young children art is much more about the process than the end result. When young children are given opportunities to experiment with art on different canvases such as this, there are endless benefits. They have the freedom to decide on their own techniques, create whatever they want, it’s a sensory process with the paint + textures, learn about colors/mixing + creating new colors, helps with the development of hand-eye coordination, helps strengthen the finger & hand muscles, allows children to develop self-expression, can be therapeutic, allowing expression without using words, works wonders for the imagination, allows them to explore different techniques without any worry of failure or particular end product in mind, & painting this way will also help children gain confidence by allowing them freedom to create art with no guidelines. 

While Kahlo was confined in terrible corsets/casts most of her life, through painting them she transformed them & turned them into something beautiful, expressive; she turned them into art. "Dolor, placer y muerte no son más que el proceso de la existencia. La lucha revolucionaria en este proceso es una puerta abierta a la inteligencia." Pain, pleasure and death are nothing more than the process of existence. The revolutionary struggle in this process is an open door to intelligence.  In other words, it is what it is, make the best of it. 

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