Alice in Wonderland 1974 Poster


Alice in Wonderland has had a place in the art world for many years. Many artists and designers have featured the mystical story in their works. Originally Carroll Dodgson told the story to a young girl, Alice Liddell,  who was a family friend's daughter.  In 1864  Alice's Adventures Under Ground was written. Then in 1865, the story was published under the name Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. 153 years ago the story was written.  Alice has been illustrated hundreds of thousands of times throughout the last decade in a half. Each illustration is a great case study for the active art movements at the time, like a wild experiment where the story and feelings of Alice are the control sample.

This poster (and the movie it advertised) is where Alice took a turn further into the psychedelic realm. The poster was made in 1974 to advertise the re-release of Alice in Wonderland. Disney had tried before. In 1951 the first Alice in Wonderland movie was released, but it flopped. Walt Disney even dismissed the 1951 picture as having “no heart.”  This time it was different, bright, new, and more psychedelic than ever before. It was aimed at college students of the “turn on, tune in, drop out” mindset. It worked the movie was a hit, it sold out in every college town where it was shown. 

This rendition of Alice in Wonderland directly shows the art climate at its release. It was successful because Disney tailored the movie to its target audience. The psychedelic movement was roaring and the movie was timed just right. This is also a great example of larger establishments getting in on counter-culture trends. The 1974 release was so popular that it changed Alice into a psychedelic mascot, you can commonly find her printed on LSD blotter sheets today. While the story has always been  other-worldly, a verbal children's tail to psychedelic mascot is still quite an intriguing transformation.

This poster makes use of psychedelic design trends. The typography is wavy, thick and is a serif typeface, these are defining factors of psychedelic type. The use of color also contributes to this look, bright colors and high contrast is abundant. Everything seems to be moving like flowing water the way things might on a trip.  A very big difference can be seen between this release's poster and previous versions.

I was unable to find the designer that made this poster.

Note: The photographed image is most likely a reproduction of the original poster.


Harmetz, Aljean. “‘Alice’ Returns, Curiouser and Curiouser.” The New York Times, April 21, 1974, sec. Archives.

Russell, Anna. “The Beguiling Legacy of ‘Alice in Wonderland.’” The New Yorker, July 11, 2021.

Victoria and Albert Museum. “The Real Alice in Wonderland · V&A.” Accessed April 30, 2024.