Mexican artist Frida Kahlo painted mostly self-portraits. While in Mexico City, we wanted to visit a place where she lived and worked. Her Casa Azul or the Blue House is tastefully decorated and contains not only paintings but also many pre-Columbian artifacts that she and her husband Diego Riviera collected. The suffering of Frida's life is evident in her works. We were struck most by the fact that the painter had a life-long great affection for communism and Soviet leaders such as Stalin and Trotsky. The latter one even lived in her house for over two years.
After artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Riviera invited Leon Trotsky to Mexico, he lived in their home for two years. In 1939, after a brief affair with Frida, the Russian moved with his family to another place. Sentenced to death by Stalin, he was constantly surrounded by his guards. After failed assassination attempt with machine guns in April 1940 some widows were bricked up, walls that surround the property were raised, watchtower was built, and in Leon's room, armed doors were added. However, the second assassination attempt few months later was successful. A Spanish Stalin supporter, who gained Trotsky's trust, killed him by slamming an alpine ice axe, in the back of his skull.
The only palace in North America that actually served as residence for royalty, Chapultepec Castle was home of Maximillian I of Mexico. This was rather short episode of establishing a monarchy in Mexico. In 1867, three years after Maximillian declared himself Emperor of Mexico, he was captured and executed by the republican government of Mexico.