Maggie Taylor (USA) Almost Alice / Dina Goldstein (Canada) Fallen Princesses



Maggie Taylor (born 1961 in Cleveland, Ohio) is an artist who works with digital images. She received a philosophy degree from Yale University. A little later she got a master's degree in photography from the University of Florida. Her work has been widely exhibited in the United States and Europe and is represented within the permanent collections of several galleries and museums. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll, with illustrations by Maggie Taylor was published in 2008.

I do not recall when I first read Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, but I am certain I saw the Disney movie version of it at some point as a child. But after a number of people mentioned similarities to some motifs in my work in the early 2000s, I reread the story. Charles Dodgson's (real name of Lewis Carroll) photographs were something I was not really aware of until I started doing further reading on him. His delight in word play and interweaving of politics, history, nursery rhymes and philosophy fascinated me.

During the three years that I worked on Alice, I looked at every possible edition I could get my hands on or see on the Internet. I particularly loved the original Tenniel illustrations and wanted to honor them but make enough of a departure to make the work my own. Carroll's own drawings were quite different from the Tenniel illustrations and I really liked that fact. It gave me a little more mental freedom to depart from what I had perceived as the classic blonde Alice in a pale blue dress. My Alices perhaps more resemble the original Victorian girl, who had brown hair, and I favor green dresses because it is my favorite color.


The 19th-century photographs I am using are daguerreotypes, ambrotypes and tintypes. I have been collecting them for about 25 years now. They were made between 1845 and 1890, are unique, and we do not know in most cases who the photographer was. Many of the "raw materials" that I assembled for the images were toys—small plastic replicas of the various animals and objects. I look for items in junk stores, antique fairs, and online at sites like Ebay. I scan them in and make layers in a Photoshop file. I spent hours and hours on Ebay and other websites to find the right miniature houses, hedgehogs and hats. One of the very first images I made for the story was Alice growing smaller/larger in the hall with a table and the key to the garden. I could not decide whether she should be small or large, and then realized that with the computer I could have her be both.

I never start an image with a preconceived idea of the finished work. I just scan in various elements that might work in the scene and begin to place and size them. There is usually a lot of retouching to be done on 19th-century photographs. Over the course of two weeks or so I am able to come up with something I like, and then I start to fine-tune the color and make test prints. It is a slow process, and on average I make 10-15 images per year.

In general, my work tends to blend interior and exterior scenes, which gives a bit of a wider window on the world. I create the backgrounds of the images from multiple layers, mostly sourced from travel snapshots that I take. Over the last 15-20 years I have had the opportunity to photograph wonderful gardens and buildings in Germany, France, England, Wales, Austria, Ireland, Italy…and they all filter into my visual vocabulary. The color palette I seem to prefer is very much influenced by Magritte, Frida Kahlo, Magical Realism and Surrealism. I am always excited by the ability to include or sample bits of photographic reality in these more painterly images I am making













Dina Goldstein (born 1969 in Tel Aviv, Israel) is a visual artist based in Vancouver, Canada. She is a photographer and pop surrealist with a background in documentary photography. Goldstein creates tableau with a nuanced visual language that places the mundane and everyday in unusual settings to inspire insight into the human condition. She is most known for her series "Fallen Princesses", created in 2007, which depicts humanized Disney Princesses placed in realistic, modern scenarios. This series has been exhibited in Canada and Europe.

Jordan, my daughter, was three at the time and was just starting to get into the 'Princess phase'. Princesses were everywhere and I too was getting introduced to them. ( I grew up in Israel in the early 70's , and was not exposed to Disney at all ). Just around the same time my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. The two events collided and made me wonder what a Princesses would look like if she had to battle a disease, struggle financially or deal with aging. I began to imagine what could happen to the Princesses later in life and after the happily ever after. Naturally they would have to deal with challenges that all modern woman face. My first idea was Rapunzel going through chemo and loosing her precious hair. I began to loosely sketch and came up with ideas for the rest of the images. With a very limited budget and a lot of volunteer help, I shot the series over two years.

Childhood should be free of adult responsibilities. It should be a time to run free, role play and explore. However parents do have the responsibility of preparing their children for the real world. I think that there is nothing wrong with a happy ending in general. It ́s just that with Disney Fairy tale interpretations that always happens because of the heroics of a handsome Prince. This message is sexist and misleading to the young minds of little girls. The truth is that fairy tales were written as gruesome stories with strong messages. They were not always intended for young children. The problem is that some kids don't have good parenting to back up these fantasy endings and later find reality too disappointing.

Contemporary woman today look very different than the typical Fairy tale Princesses. We are working with our partners to fulfil our financial responsibilities as well as taking care of the household. At work we are competitive and since we are no longer focused on equality in the work place we can now concentrate on being the best period! We are so busy and time seems to pass so quickly. If we get a moment to read a book or go for a walk.. that's a treat! On weddings, birthdays, anniversaries, mother's day we may have 'a fairy tale moment' but that doesn't last very long and you know that normal life is just around the corner.

I don't want to send out a negative message just a realistic one. My main message is that this world is so complex and everyone has their own challenges to deal with. What might seem 'perfect' on the outside is most likely not. Most people have to deal with difficult issues sometime in their lives and no one is exempt.

I think of all princess like my children, so I like each one for different reasons. My 'favourite' one changes quite often. For instance for the longest time Rapunzel represented the reason that I created the whole project and evoked such a strong emotional response from people so it was more favored. Currently I'm loving Pocahontas which is full of details and elements that keep it interesting.

  Photos of the exhibition:








Центр фотографии "Март". Екатеринбург. 8 Марта, 1

Время работы: 11.00 - 22.00 без выходных. Цена билета