A painting by Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, which was thought to be lost, has resurfaced after six decades.
It is going on sale as part of the Sotheby’s Latin American Modern art sale on Tuesday, and is expected to rake in as much as $2 million. The piece, ‘Girl with Necklace’, is unfinished and is the portrait of an unknown girl aged around 13 or 14, possibly the artist herself. Kahlo painted it when she was just 22 years old, back in 1929.
The painting had been owned by Kahlo’s former personal assistant. The woman, now in her 90s, approached Sotheby’s after keeping the painting in her California house.
“Niña Con Collar is nothing less than the seed of many self-portraits that Kahlo will produce thereafter in her signature style,” Sotheby’s said.
Art experts knew of its existence because it had once been photographed. Earlier this year, another painting by Kahlo had sold for $8 million.
Kahlo was a Mexican self-portrait artist, who started painting shortly after she suffered from a serious hip injury. She was politically active and joined the Young Communist League and the Mexican Communist Party. Many consider her to be a feminist icon because of her unconventional life style choices and because she painted real women who went through real experiences. Her subject matter included abortion, birth and breastfeeding, and subverted the traditional ideas of feminine beauty. She soon started incorporating surrealistic elements in her portraits. Her work was deeply personal in nature.