In 1980, George A. Walker was all of nineteen years old and starting his first year at the Ontario College of Art when printmaking instructor Bill Poole
approached him with a crazy idea: to create ninety-six wood engravings for Poole’s limited, letterpress edition of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
The project took ten years to complete and only 177 volumes were ever made. It was the very first entirely Canadian publication of Carroll’s beloved classic.
Now Walker is an internationally acclaimed artist and the Porcupine’s Quill has finally made this unique artwork, alongside the book that inspired it,
widely available to layreaders -- this time with several extra illustrations not present in the earlier edition. Walker’s engravings are as playful,
surreal and downright provocative as ever, offering a new and darkly energetic interpretation of Carroll’s masterpiece and subtly toying with Sir
John Tenniel’s famous nineteenth-century illustrations.
Wood engraving is a meticulous, delicate art form with a history spanning hundreds of years, and Walker works in the same tradition as Tenniel himself
whose illustrations were made into wood cuts by the Dalziel brothers for the first printing of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
in 1865. This 2011
edition celebrates Alice’s spectacular adventures as well as her equally spectacular artistic heritage with a uniquely modern twist -- by the man now known
as the ‘Mad Hatter’ of Canadian graphic arts.
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