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Show Me the Love!

February 14, 2013

It’s Valentine’s Day, and love is in the air here at the Museum! The works of art might not have their own shoebox mailboxes like the one I made in third grade, but I like to imagine the homemade Valentines they might pass between each other. We have our “going steady” couples, our “head over heels” couples, and even a few secret admirers. If you haven’t made your own Valentines yet, don’t fret—there’s still time. Take a note from the art couples below, use the DIY tutorials featured, and you’ll be showing the love to your one and only in no time.

These two are joined at the hip! Painted by John Singleton Copley in 1747, Woodbury and Sarah Langdon were real-life sweethearts who commissioned the artist to paint their portraits shortly after their marriage. Woodbury was a wealthy New Hampshire merchant with dreams of politics, and Sarah was his young bride. The couple eventually had ten children, and Woodbury went on to hold political office and serve on the New Hampshire Superior Court. Since these two are never far apart, I can imagine Woodbury sending this Valentine to his sweetheart:

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Download a template and find instructions for this project at the Bird’s Party blog.

Edward Hicks, The Peaceable Kingdom, c. 1846-1847, Dallas Museum of Art, The Art Museum League Fund

Edward Hicks, The Peaceable Kingdom, c. 1846-1847, Dallas Museum of Art, The Art Museum League Fund

These animals have been peacefully sharing their close quarters for years! Painter Edward Hicks returned to this subject again and again, imagining a world where the lambs and lions, leopards and kids could all exist together in peace. Heavily influenced by his Quaker roots, Hicks painted this subject more than one hundred times. After spending all that time together, I imagine these animals consider one another family. Perhaps the bear could send this Valentine to the lamb?

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Free printables and an animal group cheat sheet can be found at the Modern Parents, Messy Kids blog. Who knew that a group of giraffes is called a tower?

This trio is often seen hanging out in the galleries together like best buddies. There’s the boisterous, rowdy friend and the beautiful, calm sidekicks. Vernet’s A Mountain Landscape with an Approaching Storm (top left) highlights the wild beauty and sheer power of nature, while Anne Vallayer-Coster’s floral still life paintings (bottom left and right) capture the calm, quiet loveliness of a well-placed petal. Can’t you imagine the still life paintings slipping this Valentine into Approaching Storm’s pocket (perhaps with some giggles)? With its gusting winds and swelling clouds, how could Storm resist the bubbles?

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Find bubbles at the dollar store and use this free printable from the Lil Luna blog to make your own.

Vishnu as Varaha, 10th century, Dallas Museum of Art, gift of David T. Owsley via the Alvin and Lucy Owsley Foundation and the Alconda-Owsley Foundation, E.E. Fogelson and Greer Garson Fogelson Fund, General Acquisitions Fund, Wendover Fund, and gift of Alta Brenner in memory of her daughter Andrea Bernice Brenner-McMullen

Vishnu as Varaha, 10th century, Dallas Museum of Art, gift of David T. Owsley via the Alvin and Lucy Owsley Foundation and the Alconda-Owsley Foundation, E.E. Fogelson and Greer Garson Fogelson Fund, General Acquisitions Fund, Wendover Fund, and gift of Alta Brenner in memory of her daughter Andrea Bernice Brenner-McMullen

This pair is one of those “you’re my hero” kind of relationships. The 10th century statue from India depicts the Hindu god Varaha in his boar-headed avatar Vishnu. When the earth goddess Prithvi is imprisoned under the sea by an evil demon, Vishnu saves the day, rescuing her from the depths. Look closely and you can see Prithvi perched on Vishnu’s shoulder. No doubt, she would send him this Valentine:

Superhero Valentine 9

Use the free printable at the Zakka Life blog for the superhero in your life.

I hope you are feeling inspired by our artsy couples. Come pay them a visit and decide for yourself if the Valentine fits. As for your own Valentine’s bliss, if all else fails, bring your true love to the DMA and let them know this:

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(Print available for purchase at Love Sugar’s etsy shop)

Leah Hanson
Manager of Early Learning Programs

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