THE SELF-PORTRAIT THAT BROKE RECORDS FOR FRIDA KAHLO AND EDUARDO COSTANTINI
At a Sotheby’s auction, the Argentine businessman and collector acquired Diego y yo (1949) for $ 34.8 million. Thus, the oil painting became the most expensive work in the history of Frida Kahlo, in the history of Latin American art, Mexican art and by a woman artist from the region.
Self-portrait was Frida’s most recurrent genre, she dedicating practically a third of her work to it. Diego y yo, of barely 30 by 22,4 centimeters, symbolizes the tempestuous relationship between Kahlo and Rivera, who were married for almost 25 years. The intimacy in the image, and the expressiveness of the painting connote a matured and intellectual realism which is exhaustive of her own emotional state.
The artwork, in addition, is framed in its own irony; Until now, the most expensive work by a Latin American artist was Baile en Tehuantepec, by Diego Rivera, bought by Costantini for $ 15.7 million.
Eduardo Costantini (Buenos Aires, 1946) has more than 30 years of experience in the financial market and in the development of innovative and large-scale real estate projects in Latin America and the United States.
As a collector and philanthropist, in 2001 he donated more than 220 works of Latin American art, of international prestige, to the MALBA Foundation, Museum of Latin American Art of Buenos Aires, which currently houses and exhibits a collection of 700 works by the most important modern and contemporary artists of the region. Today, the museum combines this collection with the development of temporary exhibitions, film and literature programs and an important educational endeavor.
In the following video, from 2020, Diego Costa Peuser, Director of Pinta y Arte al Día, talks with Eduardo Constantini about collecting and the art of the region.