The Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP) in Seattle, Washington is the latest stop of the exhibition, Walt Disney Archives Presents: Heroes & Villains – The Art of the Disney Costume, set to open on June 5th. We were fortunate enough to get an early look at the exhibit and you can take a quick tour below.
For the first time since it’s appearance at the D23 Expo, the exhibition will immerse visitors in the world of Disney, illustrating how our understanding of its iconic characters are shaped through the artistry and creativity of its costumes. The exhibit features more than 70 original pieces and spans more than 6,000 square feet of museum space, exploring the vision, process, and craft used to create the costumes worn by some of the biggest names in entertainment.
Ten Cinderella pieces include ball gowns, tiaras, slippers, and other accessories including a gown from 2015’s Cinderella by Sandy Powell made from more than 270 yards of fabric and adorned with over 10,000 crystals.
In an unintended bit of synergy, costumes from various performances of Cruella de Vil are on display, but don’t look for any of the designs from Jenny Beavan and the new Cruella, those aren’t featured though they could be the subject of their own exhibit.
The exhibit features work from 19 different designers, 11 of whom are Oscar winners or nominees: Colleen Atwood, Jenny Beavan, Jacqueline Durran, Anthony Powell, Sandy Powell, Bill Thomas, Paco Delgado, Gary Jones, Jeffrey Kurland, Judianna Makovsky, and Anna B. Sheppard.
Though not the headlining offering of the exhibit, we were pleasantly surprised to find this costume, worn by Terence Stamp as Ramsley the Butler in 2003’s The Haunted Mansion and the costume worn by Dr. Hans Reinhardt in 1979’s The Black Hole.
One highlight of the exhibit that is sure to attract the eyes of many a fan are the three witches’ dresses from 1993’s Hocus Pocus belonging to the Sanderson Sisters worn by Bette Midler, Kathy Najimy, and Sarah Jessica Parker, all designed by Mary Vogt. Also included in the display, the signature vacuum cleaner.
The newest costumes of the exhibition on display are four pieces from 2019’s Dumbo, designed by Colleen Atwood.
The oldest costume on display is Mary Poppins’ traveling dress designed by Bill Thomas and worn by Julie Andrews in the 1964 film. It is paired with the traveling dress designed by Sandy Powell and worn by Emily Blunt in 2018’s Mary Poppins Returns.
The exhibit features two interactive activities. A “Magic Mirror” that is inspired by Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and designed by MoPOP allows visitors to virtually “try on” several of the costumes featured in the exhibition. The mirror uses touchless technology and a depth camera to sense visitors as they approach and shows them how they might look as Cinderella, Jack Sparrow, or Mary Poppins. “Getting into Character” is an interactive projection that allows visitors to explore the materials, colors, textures, and forms that costume designers use to help define a character. Guests “step into” an area where a projector detects their presence and an animated collage of materials, colors, textures, and/or patterns used to define a particular character are displayed along with information explaining the character and costume design.
Walt Disney Archives Presents: Heroes and Villains – The Art of the Disney Costume opens to the general public on June 5th, 2021 and runs through April 17th, 2022. Members of MoPOP can attend an exclusive preview on June 4th.
You can also get a feel for the exhibit by watching the replay of our livestream below!