The Deceased Dimas, 1937 - by Frida Kahlo

It was a Mexican tradition to memorialize a dead child through a painting and Frida painted this painting for a friend Delfina. This tradition can go back to 16th century colonial times.

The deceased child in this painting is the three year old son of Delfina, who is a native Indian woman and a model of Diego Rivera. Diego is the godfather of this child. When the child was seriously ill the family refused to go to medical doctor but would rather use witch doctor. Although Diego tried to get medical help for the child the family refused it and the child finally died of his disease. At the bottom this painting the inscription reads: "The Deceased Dimas Rosas at 3 Years Old - 1937".

It was not known why the painting was not given to the mother as a remembrance. It was first exhibited in 1938 at Julien Levy's surrealism gallery with the title "Dressed Up for Paradise". In 1943, it was displayed with the title "Boy King" at the Art Museum of Philadelphia. It is now a part of collection of the Dolores Olmedo Museum in Mexico City.