The Walt Disney Family Museum’s 18th original exhibition, Awaking Beauty: The Art of Eyvind Earle, showcases the life and work of the lead stylist for Walt Disney’s classic feature Sleeping Beauty (1959). This first-ever comprehensive museum retrospective features more than 250 works by Eyvind Earle (1916-2000), including evocative large-scale concept artworks for Sleeping Beauty and intricate thumbnail concept paintings for Lady and the Tramp (1955).
About the Exhibition
Earle’s colorful life story, inspiration and creative approach to art-making combined to fuel an extraordinarily diverse career across traditional art, commercial design, and film-making. Before joining Disney in 1951, Earle worked as a sketch artist for United Artists, painted watercolors to fund a cross-country bicycle trip, started a Christmas card company, and created artwork for magazine covers. Once at Disney, he worked on Peter Pan (1953), Lady and the Tramp, and finally on Sleeping Beauty as color stylist. Earle started his own animation company in 1961, earning a reputation for innovation and creativity, before returning to paint full-time in 1966. Earle received the International Animated Film Society’s Winsor McCay Award for lifetime achievement in 1998, and posthumously was awarded the Disney Legend Award for his contributions to animation.
Alongside his work for The Walt Disney Studios, Awaking Beauty showcases Earle’s fine art: elaborate and lush landscapes, unique scratchboards, rare examples of sculpture, companion poetry, and commercial illustrations. Signature landscapes and enchanting illustrations characteristic of his style are featured with limited-edition serigraphs, cartoon drawings and commercial advertisements. Earle’s own treadle-powered printing press, on which he created collectible holiday cards, is on display.
The Walt Disney Family Museum is located in the historic Presidio in San Francisco, with a breathtaking backdrop of the Golden Gate Bridge. Awaking Beauty: The Art of Eyvind Earle is on view through January 8, 2018. Tickets for this special exhibition can be purchased with general admission on-site or online at waltdisney.org.