Two Nudes in the Forest (The Land Itself) – the 1939 painting Frida Kahlo gifted her friend, Dolores del Río – just sold for a little over $8 million at a Christie’s sale of impressionist and modern art, according to the Associated Press. With this sale, Kahlo dethroned fellow Mexican artist Rufino Tamayo to become the best-selling Latin American painter of all time, El País reports.
Before Dos desnudos en el bosque, Kahlo set a record in 2006 with the $5.6 million sale of Raíces. Helga Prignitz-Poda explained that Frida painted Two Nudes – which first sold in 1989 for $506,000 – after two successful shows in Paris and New York. Prignitz-Poda describes Dos desnudos as one of Frida’s most interesting works, because it’s full of symbolism and eroticism. Helga adds that the reason her paintings are now in such high demand is simple economics.
“Of Frida Kahlo’s 145 paintings, half of them are in museums and part of private collections in Mexico, and they can’t be sold outside of the country because in 1984, her works were declared Patrimonio Artistico de la Nación,” Prignitz-Poda told Milenio. Before making its way to Christie’s, Dos desnudos was featured at the New York Botanical Garden that recreated her home, La Casa Azul.