Minerva Teichert (1888-1976), Love Story, 1949-51, oil on masonite, 36 x 48 inches. Brigham Young University Museum of Art, 1969.
Love is in the air. The sons of Father Lehi, a prosperous prophet, have fled Jerusalem for the wilderness of the Sinai Peninsula. They secretly return to the city twice for essentials: scriptural texts and prospective wives.
Love Story captures a courtship ritual not specifically chronicled in the Book of Mormon narrative. Five distinctive women, recruited sisters confident in their roles, promenade and twirl to their own tambourine music. No sirocco wind can explain the ladies’ billowing, straining costumes, but the onlooking brothers are mesmerized. The desert mating dance proves successful.
Minerva Teichert, the legendary Western woman painter who managed to obtain top-quality training in both Chicago and New York City, also had a long and happy marriage with her Wyoming rancher husband, Herman.