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Estranged Azul
Fibre & Wood 

6.3 H x 1.5 L x 1.5 L (ft)
193 H x 45 L x 45 W (cm)

2 H x 6.6 L x 2.2 W (ft)

60 H x 200 L x 65 W (cm)

An installation by Sonal Ambani
Inspired by the life and works of Frida Kahlo

A core motif to the life and work of Frida Kahlo are the ideas of pain and separation. Her work is unbridled with realistic representations of the trauma faced in her life both at a young and old age. A central influence to the installation is one of Kahlo’s works from 1944, painted shortly after her spinal surgery. The painting, The Broken Column explores the idea of separation and pain and is represented here by a severed horse and boat. Although placed physically apart, the boats are connected by two golden chains, representing the shackles that held together her broken body.

The representation of the boat is inspired by Kahlo’s work, What I Saw in the Water - a painting that explores the sadness in her life. Although the work represents a plethora of events in her life, it is encompassed by a bathtub with Kahlo’s feet floating just above the waterline. Her feet are held down by the depiction of pain in her life, almost to a point of drowning, represented here by a boat dismantled and unusable.

The third and final painting that was inspirational to the installation is The Wounded Deer, a painting that depicts her fear and desperation. The severed horse head looks down upon its legs, disjointed and wounded representing both the physical and emotional torment she faced. Furthermore the separation of the pieces depicts the divorce from her husband, where they ended up living apart. The final element to the installation the flower wreath, which was known to be worn by Kahlo to distract away from the pain and physical deformation from her multiple surgeries. The installation Estranged Azul, seeks to represent multiple facets of the separation and pain Kahlo faced in her life. The harsh reality with which she depicts the events of her life and the ability to withstand egregious amounts of pain are what inspire the installation and serve as a tribute to her undying heartache.

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