In early February, the Brooklyn Museum opened “Appearances Can Be Deceiving,” its exhibition paying tribute to Frida Kahlo. The largest U.S. show dedicated to the artist in a decade, it focuses on providing a larger portrayal of Kahlo’s life through photos, paintings, her clothing and personal possessions, and more.
The exhibition is open through May 12, and if you’re planning to book a trip to New York—or if you’re just an art-loving resident in desperate need of a staycation—the Nu Hotel in downtown Brooklyn has the perfect room for you. Collaborating with the Nu Perspectives Project, it has selected local artists to put their own unique spin on various suites, and the latest installment is its Frida Kahlo Suite, which features a full-wall mural by Brooklyn-based graphic designer and illustrator Miguel Ayuso.
“I’m focusing on portraying a calming presence,” the Oaxaca, Mexico, native told Observer. The mural occupies a huge space behind the retro-inspired headboard and brings a magical, surrealist vibe to the entire loft-style suite.
“Frida was a fighter—her life was full of dramatic events and unforgiving illnesses,” Ayuso said. “But I also want her to be seen as a dreamer.” To convey that idea, Ayuso has painted the surrealist icon’s flower-filled hair in such a way that it floats towards the middle of the painting, as if, he says, “she was thinking of the beauty in life.” The flowers then morph into birds flying over mountains, Aztec pyramids, city skyscrapers and cacti. “From the other side, she’s being observed and protected by one of the many animals she loved: a Xolo, a sacred dog in ancient Mexica Aztec culture.”
Guests will find Kahlo books and cacti accents throughout the room, which is finished with recycled hardwood floors and furniture and includes L’Occitane bath products. The suite package starts at $239 a night and includes two untimed tickets to the exhibition. Opt for the VIP Friday Package, which starts at $339, and you’ll also get two Kahlo-inspired Weeping Coconut Margaritas at the hotel bar and a copy of the show’s accompanying book, Frida Kahlo: Making Her Self Up, by its curator, Claire Wilcox.
The Frida Kahlo Suite is available to book now, and while the full museum experience will last only through the end of the exhibition, you can stay in the room well after it closes. And while you’re at the hotel, you might want to consider spending an extra night there in its David Bowie or Truman Capote suite.