Although Frida Kahlo was the 2nd & 3rd wife of Diego Rivera, the Mexican muralist, Dolores Olmedo Patino was his eternal muse, final lover and benefactress.
Dolores Olmedo Patino was born in Mexico city on Dec.14,1908 and died July 2002. Diego did a nude painting of 12 year old Dolores Olmedo much to the chagrin of her mother Prof.Maria Patino Suarez.
In Acapulco I met Hugo Zuniga, the artist who knew Dolores personally and painted several portraits of her. We took a taxi up the Peninsula de las Playa to the top of Cerro de la Pinzona to Dolores Olmedo's House (6 Inalambrica) where Diego lived with her from 1955-1956 prior to his death in April 1957.
In gratitude Diego created along
the outside wall of her home,
originally called The House of the
Winds, a mosaic depicting
Quetzalcoatl, the feathered serpent
Aztec god and Xoloitzcuintle, the
pre-Hispanic dog. The gardener
allowed us inside to view the tiled
ceiling mosaics. Lola (Lolita) was
Diego's sweet term for Dolores
Olmedo. Diego was born in
Guanajuato,"The Place of the
Frogs" and Olmedo's loving
words for Diego were " You're
my beloved Frog". A frog, a dove
symbolizing his love of country and the hammer and sickle embracing his communism adorn the
ceiling. A friendly xoloitzcuintle pre-Hispanic dog with hairless black sensitive skin, whiskers on
his face and lacking some teeth(a genetic quirk) roamed the garden.
Diego didn't like painting
outdoors. His portraits of Dolores,
her three sons and daughter, and
twenty five sunsets were painted in
the living room of the house
behind Dolores's. Twenty of these
along with other works of Diego
Rivera, Frida Kahlo and his first
wife Angelina Beloff are exhibited
at Dolores Olmedo's 16th century
home La Noria near Mexico city.
My day was complete when Hugo Zuniga took me to his studio where his huge portraits of glamorous 90 year old Dolores Olmedo adorn the walls.
Article and Photos by Lenora Hayman
*EXEKATLKALLI-House of Winds, in Nahuatl language
*Quetzalcoatl, the feathered serpent Aztec God & Xoloitzcuintle pre-hispanic dog.
* "You're My Beloved Frog" ceiling mosaic inside Dolores Olmedo's home
*Hugo Zuniga and his Dolores Olmedo portraits in his
How to get there:
Mexicana and Japan Airlines both fly direct from Vancouver to Mexico City with Mexicana transfers to Acapulco.
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