"Charles Blackman ALICE popularly known as “The Golden Alice” is a portrait of Carroll’s heroine image. This ‘princess’ is conceived as a child-goddess with the potentiality and mystery of a Goldilocks, a Leda, a Europa or a Beauty, with their bestial counterparts in fairy-tale and myth – bears, swan, bull and beast. Carroll’s originality was to make this beast a benign rabbit, which Alice releases from its bestial form and then masculinises. (...) Here, within the passion of her embrace, is the Alice a secret garden -a smouldering bouquet, wellspring of creation and carnality in the eternal female. It is from this bouquet that the seeds of inspiration flame up and through her golden hair, sending creative sparks into the hinterland, more bushfire than sunlight."
About the artist
"Departing the dark world of Alma, Blackman turned to Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. After reading the book to his blind wife, Blackman discovered kinship in her spirit and a sadness, not unlike Barbara’s in her grapple with a hostile world. So Blackman set about painting her world. In Alice in Wonderland (1956) he places Alice in a topsy-turvy setting of blossoming shapes. In Feet Beneath the Table (1956) she sits alongside a white rabbit and in Dreaming Alice (1956) she glides weightless across the canvas. Each work is a testament to Blackman’s perceptiveness and tender love of a good yarn. " Angela Tandori fine art
"Blackmans Alice is a suite of six silkscreen prints limited to an edition of 75 plus Artist Proofs.
There have been many illustrations of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland since it was first published in 1865, at the last count there where over a hundred.
Blackman has not illustrated Alice; he has in his own way discovered her. Blackman discovered Alice when he was quite grown up and the impact of his discovery coincided perfectly with his readiness as an artist. It was a magical experience for Charles Blackman, for Alice lives in a world where anything can happen. She brought him freedom that naturally took him close to the essence of the story.
Charles Blackman is a great Romantic artist, a painter of dreams and emotions. Charles Blackman’s ‘Alice’ paintings made in the early 1950’s where among his first important works.
Lewis Carrols immortal words tell us the story set us sailing to Wonderland; Blackmans paintings give us the heart of Alice. “The white Rabbit came into the kitchen and helped me cook the dinners” said artist Charles Blackman, who was working as a cook in a French restaurant in Melbourne when he painted his Alice in Wonderland series. “Then I would go home to my loft and paint The Rabbit and Alice”.
Golden Alice on a summer’s day, her heart full of dreams, is not surprised when cups and flowers and rabbits float by or where things constantly change into other things. How can she be? She is the “dream child” morning through a land of wonders and new."
More about the artist - Etching House