Happy New Year!
The time has come,” the walrus said, “to talk of many things: Of shoes and ships – and sealing wax – of cabbages and kings”
This new year, among other things, marks the 150th Anniversary of the classic story Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – more commonly known as Alice in Wonderland.
English author Charles Lutwidge Dodgson – writing under the pseudonym, Lewis Carroll – wrote the story in 1865. It tells the tale of a girl named Alice who falls through a rabbit hole into a fantasy world populated by peculiar creatures. Full of philosophy and truisms, the absurdity of the plot and the strong underlying narrative plays with logic and is one of the best examples of the literary nonsense genre.
I knew who I was this morning, but I’ve changed a few times since then.”
The anniversary will be marked in several ways by cultural institutions such as the British Library, which will loan the original handwritten illustrated manuscript for Alice in Wonderland to New York’s Morgan Library and Museum and the Rosenbach Museum of the Free Library of Philidelphia this year. The book, which bears its original title of Alice’s Adventures Under Ground, was bought by an American dealer in 1928 and returned to Britain in 1948. Later on this year, the British Library will display the book as part of an exhibition marking the 150th anniversary since its 1865 publication.
In fact, there are nearly one hundred events in 10 countries, to mark the anniversary, including a few in Canada. Alice fans everywhere are being encouraged to create their own events, and list them on the official site.
The White Rabbit by Louise Kirk (image courtesy of Avenida Home)
The fantastic characters created by Lewis Carroll have left a lasting impression and become enormously influential in popular culture and literature.
To mark the anniversary, artist Louise Kirk has created a series of designs that pay homage to Carroll’s characters – notably the King and Queen of Hearts, the Mad Hatter, the Cheshire Cat and the White Rabbit.
Her designs have been translated in delightful homewares in the UK by Avenida Home, which has created an enticing collection of placemats, coaster and trays featuring characters and scenes from the book.
The Queen of Hearts by Louise Kirk (image courtesy of Avenida Home)