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Green Country is fortunate to have so many art museums available to its residents and visitors to the 18-county region of Oklahoma. The Price Tower Arts Center in Bartlesville is an architectural gem unto itself and is host to touring exhibits throughout the year. Through October 20, visitors have the rare opportunity to explore Frida Kahlo’s Garden, a free exhibit of some of the work of one of the most significant artists of the twentieth century.
Her body of work, consisting of 250 paintings and drawings, is at once intensely personal and universal in scope and relies heavily on the natural world. According to her bio, the garden at Casa Azul (or Blue House), Kahlo’s lifelong home in Coyoacan, Mexico City, was a creative refuge and a source of inspiration for the artist and her husband, Diego Rivera.
The garden, which was filled with native plants, housed Kahlo and Rivera’s collection of pre-Hispanic artifacts and folk art displayed on a four-tiered pyramid inspired by the Mesoamerican city of Teotihuacan.
This exhibition offers insights into the ways in which the garden at Casa Azul, the diversity of plant life in Mexico, and the rich cultural history of the country nourished the creativity of the world’s great artists.
“Frida Kahlo’s Garden is a very unique opportunity for Price Tower Arts Center because Kahlo is such an iconic and influential artist,” said Deshane Atkins, PTAC Curator. “It gives a glimpse in the life and home of Kahlo and explains the influence on her work.
“We are very lucky that we are able to host the exhibit so soon, as the show is currently booked through 2023 and will visit 23 cities across the country. We are also the only stop in Oklahoma,” she added.
Rick Loyd, PTAC executive director, says the exhibit is an opportunity for everyone to learn about Frida Kahlo’s life, her garden and how she inspires many people, even today. “Frida Kahlo was able to take the pain and happiness from her life and project it into her art in a way many can see and gain insight and comfort. This exhibition is one that people from the entire region will be coming to see, and I’m excited for us at Price Tower Arts Center to have the opportunity to host this exciting show.”
Exhibit visitors will be able to explore iconic photographs of the artist and her home and garden along with reproductions of several of her paintings. It also features a large reproduction of the pyramid that was in her garden. There are also several interactives that teach about her culture, family, special flowers and plants that could be found in her garden and other special things about her home.
The exhibition is made possible by NEH on the Road, a special initiative of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Frida Kahlo’s Garden is adapted from the exhibition, FRIDA KAHLO: ART, GARDEN, LIFE, organized by guest curator Adriana Zavala at The New York Botanical Garden. It was made possible with major funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Karen Katen Foundation, The LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust, MetLife Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, and the New York State Council on the Arts. It was adapted and toured for NEH on the Road by the Mid-America Arts Alliance.
Price Tower Gallery hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. and Sunday, noon until 5 p.m. The PTAC is located at 510 S. Dewey, Bartlesville, OK. For additional information, please see pricetower.org.
The Price Tower Arts Center is a member of Green Country Marketing Association, one of 11 multi-county organizations working with the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department and others to promote the state tourism industry.