Color artist and Disney Legend Mary Blair brought contemporary art to the Walt Disney Studios in a way no other artist had ever done before. Blair started working for the Walt Disney Studios in 1940, lending her expressive, modernist art to several animated films such as Cinderella, Peter Pan and Alice in Wonderland. Though she is best known for her work as the key designer on “it’s a small world” for the UNICEF Pavilion at the 1964 New York World’s Fair, she also created several murals for both Disneyland and Walt Disney World.
For the 1967 reimagining of Disneyland Park’s Tomorrowland area, Mary Blair was entrusted to create two large murals featuring her stylized children that would welcome guests to the new Tomorrowland. Each mural was fifty-four feet long by fifteen feet high and faced each other, but both no longer exist. Blair’s largest mural and the last one she created for the Walt Disney Company can be found in the Grand Canyon Concourse of Disney’s Contemporary Resort. The “Pueblo Village” mural is ninety feet tall and encases the elevator shaft of the modern resort, facing four different directions. Over 18,000 hand-painted, one-foot tiles feature stylized American Indian children, animals and florals with each side telling a story of the Grand Canyon.
Have you ever noticed the five-legged goat on the side of the mural that faces the monorail? Mary Blair purposely created the goat with five legs, an imperfect goat, because the Navajo people often placed imperfections in their art forms based on their beliefs that nothing man-made is perfect, and to imply perfection disrespects the “Great Spirit.” #contemporaryresort #maryblair #waltdisneyworld #disneyresorts #instadisney #disneyphotography #disneylife #disneygram #capturingthemagic