Curiouser and Curiouser

We are about to be inundated with Alice! The barrage has already begun. Prepare yourselves for the next few weeks as Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland takes us all down a new rabbit hole. You see, not only is his new movie about to start showing in theaters everywhere, but many artists and opportunists are taking advantage of the attention this famous director is paying to Surrealism’s favorite story by creating their own interpretations. Much of this less-familiar work you will see will offer more than Burton’s fanciful imagery.

I, for one, am not a huge Burton fan…he goes over the top in ways that, in my humble opinion, do not deliver anything very thoughtful. Don’t get me wrong – I’m highly anticipating the eyecandy and will see it in 3D the first chance I get. There are exceptions, of course (my love for Jack Skellington will never die), but his movies of late have not impressed me. No, not even the exhibit at the MoMA.

I would like to offer you some alternative tidbits, old and new, from the cult of Alice. I do this not to dissuade you from the movie, but to extend your knowledge of the neverending influence this wonderful story has had upon our world, should you not already know:

A Caterpillar Explains the Female Orgasm, by Carrie Ann Baade. This and other paintings will be showing at Rosenfeld Gallery in Philadelphia starting on March 7, 2010.  Yours truly did a wonderfully long interview with Ms. Baade not too long ago that you can oggle here.

Ralph Steadman‘s rendition of the cards painting the rose trees.

Here’s the cover of artist Camille Rose Garcia‘s new book. (If you order it via this link, I’ll get a teeny commission from Amazon which will help me a weeny bit in maintaining this blog!) You can also see some of the original drawings from her book at Merry Karnowsky Gallery in LA.

Arthur Rackham illustrated a copy of the tale. More of his interpretations can be found here.

This strange tidbit is by Phillip Gough, a little known illustrator.

Lastly, a bit of Jan Svankmajer’s Alice should give you a taste of the strange and sardonic Czeck film director’s mind:

Of course, I’ve left out completely the famous illustrations of Sir John Tenniel’s which are the most memorable of Alice illustrations and there are many many more in existance that I just don’t have time to place here…at least not yet…

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