Nothing is worth more than laughter. It is strength to laugh and to abandon oneself, to be light.

Frida Kahlo

It is the fate of many famous women to be known primarily for the tragedies in their lives, rather than for their lightness. Artist Frida Kahlo is often thought of in the context of her lifelong health travails and her torrid, sometimes violent romance with another larger-than-life Mexican painter, Diego Rivera. But, fiercely optimistic, Kahlo surrounded herself with beauty and brilliance — not only in the art for which she is so well known, but also in life. She had numerous friends and lovers. She painted her home a bright cobalt blue and called it Casa Azul. (Poet Carlos Pellicer said “the house … seems to lodge a bit of heaven.”) And she was deeply committed to social justice. “I must fight with all my strength so that the little positive things that my health allows me to do might be pointed toward helping the revolution,” she said. That was, for her, “the only real reason for living.”