On her deathbed at age forty-six, artist Frida Kahlo recounts through memory and hallucination her life experiences, including her interactions with fellow artist Diego Rivera, who she loves despite her open scorn of his creations.
"I was born in rain and I will die in rain," begins Kate Braverman’s The Incantation of Frida K., an imagined life journey of Frida Kahlo. The book opens and closes inside the mind of Frida K., at 46, on her deathbed, taking us through a kaleidoscope of memories and hallucinations where we shiver for two hundred pages on the threshold of life and death, dream and reality, truth and myth. Defiant and uncompromising, Frida bears the wounds of her body and spirit with a stark pride, transcending all limitations, wrapping her senses around the places, events, and conversations in her past. Frida K. interacts from her hospital bed with her mother, sister, Diego, and her nurse. She calls herself a "water woman," navigating into unexplored dimensions of her world, leading us through the alleys of San Francisco’s Chinatown, of Paris in 1939 (where she rubbed shoulders with André Breton), and of her neighborhood in Mexico City, Coyoacan. Her voyage is an inward one, an incantation before dying. In The Incantation of Frida K., Braverman’s language dances and spins. She carves out a bold interpretation of the life of an artist to whom she is vitally connected.