But the exhibition is not all about Kahlo. Unfortunately, today Diego Rivera is mostly known as Kahlo’s husband, but in fact, Rivera is “one of Mexico’s most important artists, a maestro,” Jaramillo said. Although he is most famous for his large-scale murals, his oeuvre “goes beyond muralism, and in this exhibition you’ll be able to take a journey through his artistic evolution,” she added.
Rivera’s masterpieces on display include “The Mathematician,” “Knife and Fruit in Front of the Window” and a watercolor entitled “The Family,” as well as works from his cubist period, scenes from some of his famous Mexican murals, portrayals of Mexican people, pre-Columbian images and portraits of his friends, including Irene Philipps, Dolores Olmedo’s daughter.
Also on view are some works that Rivera painted almost at the end of his life, including “Russian Drawings” produced during and after his second visit to the Soviet Union in 1956. The unexpected series of blue-eyed kids on sleds is hard to miss.
In the main hall, Frida’s works are juxtaposed with those of her husband. The side halls exhibit works by each of the artists separately. One of the highlights is the rarely shown four-meter mural “Glorious Victory” by Diego Rivera, which belongs to the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, a gift from the artist to U.S.S.R.
At the hall in the back visitors will be able to see paintings by other Mexican artists who were active in the middle of the 20th century, all part of a large gift to the Soviet Union in 1945. These paintings are part of the Pushkin Museum collection but have never been exhibited before. You’ll also be able to see a few art objects from pre-Columbian era from private collections. There is also a large cinema hall, which shows several documentaries about the artists on a loop.
“This exhibition is a perfect display of how both artists viewed life: intimate, social, happy, tragic, personal. Each is an individual artist, each can stand alone and yet stand together, like at this spectacular exhibition,” Adriana Jaramillo said.
The exhibition is open till March 12. More information in Russian and ticket purchases can be found here. There is an audio guide in Russian and English.
1 Manege Square. Metro Okhotny Ryad. moscowmanege.ru/en