152 years ago on July 4, 1865, the first edition of Lewis Carroll’s book “The Adventures of Alice in Wonderland” was published.
Once on a boat trip, 10-year-old Alice Liddell asked her mathematics teacher Charles Dodgson to write a wonderful story for her and her sisters Edith and Lorina. Dodgson, who had previously told the children of Dean Liddell’s fairy tale, readily agreed. This time he told the sisters about the adventures of a little girl in the Underground Country, where she fell, falling into the hole of the White Rabbit. The main character very much reminded Alice herself, and some minor characters – her sisters Lorina and Edith. Alice Liddell liked the story so much that she asked the teacher to write it down. Dodgson promised, but still had to recall several times. Finally, he fulfilled Alice’s request and gave her a manuscript called “The Adventures of Alice Under the Earth”. Later, the author decided to rewrite the book. In the spring of 1863, he sent her for review to his friend George MacDonald. The new version of the book Dodgson presented his favorite at Christmas 1863.
July 4, 1865, his book, published under the pseudonym Lewis Carroll, was published in the
British publishing house “Macmillan and Co.” The first edition of the book, entitled “The Adventures of Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll”, was illustrated by artist John Tennial, whose illustrations today are considered classic. The second book – “Alice in the Looking-Glass” – appeared six years later, in 1871. Both tales, which are more than 100 years old, are still popular today, and the hand-written copy that Dodgson presented once to Alice Liddell is kept in the British Library.
To illustrate this fairy tale, many famous artists considered themselves an honor. We collected the most outstanding illustrations.
The writer decorated his work with 38 drawings, where the main character turned out to be a dark-haired girl, very similar to the young Liddell.
In 1865, the first edition of the book with illustrations of Sir John Tenniel, an English artist and cartoonist, was published. Today his drawings are considered canonical. But at that time the writer did not like the ideas of the painter. Carroll insisted that the images fully meet his author’s design. Tenniel initially agreed with this demand, but later changed his mind … So, his Alice is a blonde with long hair. After the release of the book gained instant popularity. The critic’s work was also noted by the artist. In particular, they appreciated “truthfulness in the depiction of animal forms.”
In 1907, the book was illustrated by the Englishman Arthur Rackham. By popularity, this edition is second only to the original “Alice”, designed with the participation of John Tenniel. It is interesting that Rackham moved very far from the author’s ideas. In his drawings, the influence of the Art Nouveau style is clearly discernible: the images are full of wavy lines, the smallest details, they clearly have an interest in all sorts of horrors.
The Griffin “from Rackham” seems the most frightening beast of all that was ever created in the illustrations for “Alice.”
The version of “Alice” from Tuve Jansson, the author, and illustrator of the story about the mummies appeared in the publication, which was published in Finland in 1963. Her drawings are charming and poetic. All the heroes of “Alice” here are touchingly similar to the mummy-trolls.
Great Daly made illustrations for the edition, published in 1969 by Press-Random House. This version of the design is one of the most unusual. Each chapter of the fairy tale is adorned with light as if sketching away from the attention of the viewer drawings.
In 1990, the famous artist-illustrator Greg Hildebrandt also could not resist the fascination of the surrealist story from Lewis Carroll. He created bright, juicy, memorable images.
In Russia, illustrations of Gennady Kalinovsky are most well known. The artist performed 71 black-and-white drawings for a book published in 1974. Kalinovsky in his own way saw the essence of the work. In the drawings he tried to embody the small man’s entry into the mysterious and bizarre world of adult life.