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Hayden Herrera

Author of Frida: A Biography of Frida Kahlo

21+ Works 2,117 Members 22 Reviews

About the Author

Hayden Herrera is the author of the Pulitzer Prize-nominated Arshile Gorky: His Life and Work, as well as Frida: A Biography of Frida Kahlo and Matisse: A Portrait.

Works by Hayden Herrera

Associated Works

Frida [2002 film] (2003) — Original book — 184 copies
Significant Others: Creativity and Intimate Partnership (1993) — Contributor — 144 copies


20th century (21) art (298) Art - Artist (5) art history (49) artist (24) artists (46) arts (10) biographies (10) biography (360) Biography & Autobiography (9) biography-memoir (16) communism (7) creativity (9) Diego Rivera (32) drama (12) DVD (38) feminism (7) film (8) Frida (17) Frida Kahlo (111) gone (11) history (25) Latin America (19) memoir (11) Mexican (12) Mexican Art (18) Mexican artists (11) Mexico (124) non-fiction (112) painters (24) painting (54) paintings (6) read (12) sculpture (7) surrealism (16) to-read (102) unread (6) wishlist (7) women (36) women artists (19)

Common Knowledge



This reminds of the Larkin poem about parents. Herrera is very matter of fact about her childhood and the fact that she survived it and went on to have a good life, at least from outside appearances, is a testament to resilience. I went onto read Paper Palace which was, to my surprise, seemingly a novel based on another selfish mother set decades ahead.
ccayne | 1 other review | Jun 24, 2023 |
Enjoyed this book immensely. A very detailed, informative and readable biography. I've gone from a point of knowing virtually nothing about Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera (or, to be honest, Mexican art in general) to being fascinated with them, their art and their politics. I've got to explore further!

As a very welcome (and necessary) bonus the book contains a lot of photographs and colour and black and white plates of Frida Kahlo's works, which are extensively referenced in the text.
TheDimPause | 15 other reviews | Jul 9, 2021 |
Bestimmend für Leben und Werk der mexikanischen Malerin Frida Kahlo (1907 - 54) war ein schwerer Unfall, von dessen Folgen sie sich zeitlebens nicht mehr richtig erholen sollte. Über Monate zum Stilliegen verurteilt, beginnt sie zu malen, und die Malerei gibt ihr die Möglichkeit, sich von ihrer Angst und ihrem Leid zu befreien. Hayden Herreras Biographie, die hier in einer erweiterten Neuausgabe vorliegt, zeichnet den Lebensweg dieser bewundernswerten Frau nach und liefert gleichzeitig eine ebenso kenntnisreiche wie ausführliche Analyse ihres Werkes.… (more)
Fredo68 | 15 other reviews | May 14, 2020 |
Upper Bohemia is a memoir based on the childhood of art historian Hayden Herrera.
Herrera is probably best known as the author of "Frida: A Biography of Frida Kahlo". The book was later adapted into the movie "Frida" produced by, and starring, Salma Hayek.
Born in Boston in 1940, her wealthy artistic parents rejected all social convention of that era opting instead for a vagabond lifestyle. This book is an account of that lifestyle seen through a child's eyes.
Despite growing up shuffled between parents, relatives, schools and countries, Herrera managed to have quite an extraordinary childhood. She sums it up best by saying "Our terrible mother gave Blair and me a wonderful life"
While rich in detail, the narrative is very matter-of-fact. Herrera does not dwell on the emotional or negative aspects of her upbringing. Instead of placing blame, she chooses to focus on how she grew from the experience.
Though sad, and even shocking at some points, this engrossing memoir is also unexpectedly beautiful and uplifting.
*Thank you Simon & Schuster Publishing, Hayden Herrera and NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.
… (more)
Penny_L | 1 other review | Apr 1, 2020 |



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