Saturday, December 27, 2014

Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There, Illustrated by Kalinovsky

Now I have the privilege of owning this amazing book - Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There with illustrations by Gennady Kalinovsky, an eminent Soviet (Russian) artist. I collect books with his works, and this one is a pearl of my collection. No, not even a pearl. A Cullinan diamond!

I am sure no one needs extended comments and explanations, as everyone has read the book. If you have not, or if you have forgotten - read it! It is a true masterpiece. I have read a good review of the illustrations today and it said that probably the book was so fascinating and outstanding not because it was clever, full of chess and mathematics and absurdities and curiosities, but because it was full of love for the girl, and these illustrations do reflect that love and desire to take care. I think this might be true. And although Alice is not as pretty here as in some other books, she is very touching, vulnerable and alive. And all the creatures are of course immensely cute! The White Queen is so helpless and silly, and the Black Queen is condensed fury and determination. My favourite one, however, is Alice in the boat, floating among flowers and lights. It is pure magic and I love it.

Yes, some people still need and want paper books. Just look at this magic of lines and shades. And imagine a child reading this, and his or her imagination working, transforming this into a different reality, playing with the words and images - instead of just watching a bright movie, as simple as fast food.

These are the illustrations which are clickable - enjoy! I have not scanned them, but found them here.


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