Who let the dogs in? Kimbell celebrates dogs with first-ever Dog Day as new painting debuts
Indie and Lily arrived ready for a party.
The two canine besties were adorned with colorful bandanas and pink bows affixed to the tops of their heads. Indie, a sheepadoodle – a combination of an Old English Sheepdog and a Standard Poodle – even had her tail dyed pink, with a dog-safe fur color.
“I just got back from a trip to Mexico and I was still in the spirit,” said Indie owner Nickie Maxson of Arlington.
With an online dog costume contest at the Kimbell Art Museum’s first-ever Kimbell Dog Day event, what better opportunity to dress up for success?
Maxson and Kim and Daniel Murphree of Arlington, owners of Lily, a Labradoodle — a Labrador Retriever and Poodle mix — are regulars on the Dallas dog event scene. They all met at a dog obedience class in Arlington.
Despite their colorful fashion statements, Indie and Lily went home with none of the prizes from the August 26 event which marked the start of Kimbell’s latest acquisition – which features a dog – and coincided with National Day of the dog.
The free event attracted several hundred dogs and their humans, including art lovers eager to discover Dog guarding a basket of grapes by Austrian artist Ferdinand Georg Waldmüller.
Kimbell’s executive director, Eric M. Lee, described Waldmüller (1793-1865) as one of the most influential Austrian artists of the 19e century. Painted in 1836, Dog guarding a basket of grapes hasn’t been seen for over 50 years, he said.
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Artistically, the painting combines the genres of still life, animal portraiture and landscape painting, Lee said.
“It’s an incredibly popular painting and we expect it to become one of the most popular and beloved in our collection,” Lee said.
The painting debuted in the museum’s Kahn building in a conspicuous brown wooden frame, which Lee said would soon be replaced.
“We found the perfect setting for it,” Lee said. “He arrives from Paris in about a week.”
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Lee acknowledged that in France and many European countries, work is usually suspended in August, so the delivery of the frame has been delayed.
Nonetheless, the celebration went as planned with a variety of activities dog owners could enjoy with their canine companions, including free animal drawings, refreshing ice cream and shaved ice treats for people and dogs, art activities and a pet parade and competition with categories. for small dogs, large dogs, best costume, dog that most closely resembles the dog in Waldmüller’s painting, and overall “Best in Show”.
Although Hattie was not dressed in a costume, she was greeted with applause and cheers as she walked across the stage during the pet parade. The Spotted Great Dane won in the largest dog category as much for its resilience as it was for its enormous size.
Hattie was born in Florida with her umbilical cord wrapped around one of her legs and had to have most of her leg amputated shortly after birth.
But Connor Teague and his wife, Allie Taschuk, were not deterred by his disability. They traveled to Florida to retrieve the rescue dog, now 2½ years old.
The couple then had a custom-made prosthetic leg made for her at Baker Orthotics & Prosthetics in Fort Worth so she could move around more easily.
“She’s doing really well with the prosthesis,” Teague said.
The winner of the costume contest was Loki, a Dandie Dinmont Terrier, sporting a traditional tartan outfit and cap, befitting his Scottish heritage.
Loki’s owner, Mike Vreeland of Arlington, eagerly ticks off details about the Dandie Dinmont Terrier, which is one of the rarest and most endangered breeds, with only 4,000 known worldwide.
“They are almost as endangered as the giant panda with 2,600 remaining,” Vreeland said.
The dog that won the Most Resembling Dog award on the board was an Akita pup named Echo owned by Kimbell employee Brandon Barnes.
The Best in Show award went to a Kona and a Koby, a pair of toy Austrian Shepherds owned by Tai Yasuda of Fort Worth.
The judges for the event were Nancy Lamb, visual artist; Laura Lape, social media personality; and emcee Tony Green, host of “Hello, I’m Tony Green”, correspondent for NBC Texas Today and host of the “On the Same Page” podcast.
Prizes included Kimbell merchandise, a Kimbell Café gift certificate, tickets to an upcoming Kimbell special exhibit, and a Hollywood Feed gift basket for the Best in Show winner.