Folk Art

Antique Folk Art Vibrant Scherneschnitte Valentine
  • This lovely Scherenschnitte Valentine dates to circa 1800 and still has vibrant colors although the paper itself is quite delicate and fragile.  It was cut by folding it into quarters so that each quarter bears the same designs.  At such motifs, I’ve never seen in one of these scissor-cuttings.  Each quarter has a couple holding hands, both with white painted faces with bright rosy-red cheeks.  He wears a top hat, tight pants that stop at the ankle, a jacket and veskit.  Each of the women wears a bonnet, empire waisted dress with long tight sleeves.  The couples each stand under a pine tree.  Each corner has two cut song birds.  Also in each quarter are steepled churches that have been painted vibrant, glorious colors.  Perhaps the churches are where the young couples will wed.  The center medallion is outlined by a trellis with flowers, as is the edge of the Valentine.  A poem is written on solid paper which surrounds hearts.  The poem is written around the center and says,

    I am writing unto you
    For to say my heart is true
    And to drop a tender line
    To my Lovely Valentine.
    If you take it in good part
    Then it will delight my heart
    But if you should angry be
    Surely you will pardon me.

    The Valentine paper is very delicate and has suffered some losses and had a few repairs.  As you can see in the photo, a repair using white paper has been done on the left side.  It is glued to the piece, so I did not try to change it.  The cut-out is glued to a piece of period paper which is much the same color.  I’ve had the Valentine conservation mounted and framed in a period gilt frame.  The framed size is 15 ½” x 15 ½”, size of the paper is 13” x 13”.  This is a really special piece of folk art.

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