Families Recreating Famous Art Are Winning The Isolation Game
A bath, some bed sheets, a headless doll — you don't need much to recreate a famous work of art at home, just scroll through the masses of superb homages on Instagram. From babies to full Adonises, families are getting in on the action with their own twinning masterpieces.
The team at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art started the #metwinning challenge months ago, before the Grecian half-head by the foyer was swept clean of its audience by the pandemic. "When we came across the amazing account @tussenkunstenquarantine, it seemed liked such a natural fit to connect the two ideas and offer a#MetTwinning challenge from home to our followers," explains Claire Lanier, senior social media manager at The Met. "What a joy it's been to see the creativity of our followers for this campaign." And, well, what else are we doing?
Participating in the challenge "was really my idea at first," says Francesca Guddemi, a photographer and mother of two, "but when I showed [her children], they were so eager to look through art on the Met website and find one that they wanted to 'dress up as.'"
Her daughter went for one of Degas’ ballerinas, and her 7-year-old son "decided to be adventurous and let me paint his face" for an homage to Vincent Van Gogh's famous self-portrait. "They had fun and so did I!" she tells Romper.
Pretty, pretty, pretty good.
Next up, Julie Mudrick, the mom behind Bus Stop Costumes, who has gone viral in the past for dressing up in a different costume to pick up her five children from the bus stop, was obviously ready for social isolation. Her family offer several takes on fine aht, from John Millais' "Ophelia" to René Magritte's extremely of-the-moment-once-again "The Lovers," to Francisco Goya's “Saturn Devouring His Son,” a painting about the 7 p.m. hour (just having fun here). Mudrick says her children have researched the paintings themselves, learning about the author, the style, the background and so on.
The below take on Jean-Étienne Liotard's "Portrait of Maria Frederike van Reese-Athlone at Seven Years of Age" has taught me two things: 1) there is such a thing as looking like royalty at 7, and 2) when in doubt, get yourself a bigger pup to hold.
Things got really fun when a performing arts studio in Murray, Kentucky, got in on the action. Owner Aimee Simmons explains that the studio, Quincy's Academy, is continuing to conduct classes over Zoom through the national shutdown, but is using the #metwinning challenge to "keep some stability and spirits high for recital when we can return to our studio home."
Kentucky mom Jayce Frame's children Jaleah and Taeshun attend the studio, and each created a post, a true aesthetic smorgasborg ranging from Picasso (Jayce) to an unknown masterpiece (Jeleah) and a 2011 painting by Weldon Ryan (Taeshun):
Tabbatha Tidwell's daughters Aaliyah and Athena are also members of the studio and got in on the action, blessing us with a version of "The Starry Night" and, rather appropriately, "Study Of A Dancer" by Edgar Degas:
Quincy's Academy alum Madison Purdy went a little more modern with her take on a Banksy:
Richli Wilkerson also attends the studio, and recreated Berthe Morisot's "Women At Her Toilette" (I'm calling it a twalette until isolation is over):
Beyond Kentucky, here is Yana Ritchie and her baby, Stella, recreating William-Adolfe Bouguereau's "Brother and Sister," one of my favorites in the Met Museum, which is why I have given it pride of place at the top of this article. It also has very maternal vibes, and sets something off in my ovaries, so there is that:
If you love all these recreations and don't have kids, or don't have pliable kids, remember that you don't need chillun to play along — take it from the genius behind @imnotyourpony:
Happy twinning, all.