That last time, it was Kahlo who was confined to bed, recovering from recent operations. She must have been thrilled to see her old pal, who showed her what being a successful woman artist could look like. “O’Keeffe was the woman artist…the representative, the token, the exemplar,” Grasso says. “You can think about how much O’Keeffe—as a person, as a friend, as a woman, and as an artist—might be absolutely fascinating and important to her.”
Maybe O’Keeffe brought Kahlo flowers, and maybe Kahlo offered her friend some local tequila. The two were different people than when they first met, two decades earlier, and they hadn’t been permanent fixtures in each other’s lives. Their bond, however loose, was still there.