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V&A to display Disney art, Tim Burton costumes at Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser

alice in wonderland concept art disney

The V&A‘s landmark exhibition for 2020, Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser, will display Walt Disney concept art and Tim Burton costumes for the first time in the UK.

The exhibition will feature rare concept art from Walt Disney‘s Alice in Wonderland (1951), as well as sketches and costumes from Tim Burton‘s Alice in Wonderland (2010).

Going on show for the first time in the UK are Johnny Depp‘s Mad Hatter costume and Mia Wasikowska’s Alice costume.

The exhibition will also include notes from early meetings with Aldous Huxley, concept drawings from David Hall, and designs by Mary Blair.

Concept art and costumes from 1951 and 2010 films

alice in wonderland concept art disney

In addition, it will explore the creative partnership between Burton and costume designer Colleen Atwood, who recreated her costumes for 3D.

“The idea of designing Alice in Wonderland was terrifying at first, because each character is so beloved and brought to life in so many traditions,” said Atwood.

“I began by returning to Lewis Carroll’s original books and the decade in which they were published, because it was just so indicative of the story itself.

Exploring the global impact of Alice in Wonderland

alice in wonderland tim burton johnny depp disney

“So it is wonderful that the John Tenniel illustrations will go on show alongside the clothes created for the film, at the V&A, for future generations of Wonderland fans to draw connections and inspiration from.”

Curiouser and Curiouser will feature an ambitious theatrical design and will showcase over 300 objects from film, performance, fashion, art, music and photography.

It will highlight the global impact of Alice in Wonderland, including illustrations by Tenniel and Ralph Steadman, fashion from Viktor & Rolf and Vivienne Westwood, and photography from Tim Walker.

Kate Bailey, senior curator of theatre and performance at the V&A, said the attraction will “reveal the lesser known stories behind the creative development of this iconic film, for the first time in the UK”.

“The exhibition will celebrate the books as an endless source of inspiration and curiosity for some of the world’s most creative minds – we look forward to welcoming a new generation to imagine their own wonderland on the other side of the looking glass.”

The otherworldly experience will boast immersive environments, secret doors and theatrical sets in a ‘mind-bending’ journey down the rabbit hole.

The exhibition, designed by Tom Piper, will have large-scale digital projections and immersive environments – including secret doors and interactive displays.

Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser runs from June 27, 2020 to January 10, 2021 at the V&A’s Sainsbury Gallery.

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Bea Mitchell

Bea is a journalist specialising in entertainment, attractions and tech with 10 years' experience. She has written and edited for publications including CNET, BuzzFeed, Digital Spy, Evening Standard and BBC. Bea graduated from King's College London and has an MA in journalism.

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