Heroines Workshop

A while ago I ran a workshop discussing heroines and one of our collective favourites was Frida Kahlo, she produced astonishing visual art whilst in intolerable pain, made a living from her art as an independent era in a time when this was almost unheard of, had an affair with Trotsky and appeared in the cover of Vogue. I thought I knew a fair bit about her but I didn;t know that there are still loads of her body casts in her house, she spent a lot of her life in these body casts so she painted and ornamented them, this idea fascinated me, and seemed to sum up how she lived her life through art and revealing the imperfections of her body. This is a first draft and I am worried it still somewhat trite and saccharine so any advice would be welcomed. This came straight out of my notebook.


painting her cast


making beauty out of the weakness of her spinal column

reforming a deformity

creating verdant flowers and birdsong

in a hospital room fighting the whiteness

and disinfectant with her paint palette

what would save her fragile life

painting what shouln;t be painted

taking her guts out of her skin

unzipping her scars to show everyone

the pain of a broken body

the cracks and fissures created in her mind

giving them detail and hyper coloiur

her disposable casts made priceless

made ornament by her attention

to her own body

determining to be beautiful on her own terms.


The Stirred quad is formed of Rebecca Audra Smith, Anna Percy, Jasmine Chatfield and Lenni Sanders.

Posted in Anna Percy, NaPoWriMo, Poetry Scrawls
4 comments on “Heroines Workshop
  1. kazvina says:

    i think the words weakness and fragile seem out of place as descripters for her body because of the inherent strength and will to fight that she possessed. I finished the poem i wrote about her in your workshop…oh it seems descripter isnt a word…well it is now…

  2. brickybard says:

    Great subject: the blank canvas of a plaster cast turned into a work of art,
    the many facets of Frida encased like Russian dolls.

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The Stirred team at Reclaim the Night Manchester 2015
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