Frida Kahlo in her painting Sun and Life bring out the similarity between plants and humans and how the sun is a constant factor of life. The three-eyed sun in her work is surrounded by plants with the plants mimicking both the male and the female reproductive systems. The sun is watching the plants give life the same way it beams on humans.
The plants in forms of the male penises and female wombs in the protection of a growing fetus during the gestation period are evident of the painter's passion for fertility. The protrusions and eruptions of the organs from beneath the painting all aiming at giving warmth to the budding life inside are a sign that life is sacred and should be protected. The whole process is symbolic of childbirth right from conception.
Drawn to do the painting, Sun and Life is motivated by Kahlo's inability to have children after a bus accident she got involved in a tender age of eighteen. She tries to overcome her sadness by painting life in its realistic form seen when the pistils are representing semen drop on the ovum. However, Kahlo's loss can be felt as she paints the third eye of the sun and the fetus weeping.
The painter’s similar works with an almost related thought include The Broken Column, Without Hope, Still Life With Parrot and Fruit and The Wounded Table. These paintings all have a seemingly looming melancholic mood and have a common theme; sorrow. Kahlo’s obsession with her inability to bear kids could have been the driving power behind some of these paintings. Influenced by Kahlo's fertility artworks, other painters that painted similarly themed paintings included Joaquim Sounier's Women, Per Pruna's Plot 24 and Arturo Souto's Women Naked.
Kahlo did other famous portraits of her family, her husband and mostly herself in different settings. Some of her famous works include Self-portrait with Cropped Hair, Frieda and Diego Rivera, Self-portrait With Thorn Necklace and Humming Bird and My Grandparents, My parents and Me. The Sun and Life painting are currently at the Gallery Arvil in Mexico City.