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Thursday
Aug092012

Constructing... The Land

Commentary

Considering that the Labor Day preview was only open to construction crews and families, the 26k turn-out is pretty impressive, but is does speak the immensity of what was the largest privately funded construction project in the world. (1) It is also interesting to note that Tomorrowland (not Fantasyland) is used as a size comparison for The Land.

In every incarnation of Future World, The Land was intended to be massive and (although never realized) the Tony Baxter interpretation with its crystalline bio-domes and outlandish plethora of attractions did provide the groundwork for the basic structure of the pavilion. This News Brief concludes with a spotlight on the creation of the Land’s impressive entrance title murals. However, what is not mentioned is the interconnectedness of the mural with another WDW landmark – Cinderella Castle.
The original design was by Walt Peregoy as an illustration of the diverse strata below the Earth’s surface. The “Mural-ization” process provided by the extremely well qualified Dorothea Redmond, whose last project for the company was the five-panel depiction of the Little Cinder Girl’s story that graces the breezeway of Cinderella Castle. Additionally, at this time Dorothea wasn’t only supervising the creation of The Land mural but also recreating her original Cinderella masterpiece for Tokyo Disneyland’s castle as well – quite a busy few years for the production designer/artist who's also credits also include seven films for Alfred Hitchcock and a little Civil War epic titled Gone with the Wind.
Fortunately, The Land’s Entrance Mural has remained untouched in a sea of changes at the Land. This when combined with its Background Music, is the least changed public space in Future World.

© Disney All Rights Reserved

Photo Caption:
Dated June 1st, this photo was taken shortly after the extensive scaffolding was removed.  The shell of the pavilion is basically complete, but one would also notice that the pavilion is substantially brighter than you would ever find it today. Two reasons for this are the yet-to-be-installed tinted/tempered windows and beautifully executed Atrium mural depicting an abstract sky. The original intent of this masterpiece is to act as substitute for the opposing skylights and, with its bright/cool colors, reflect as much light (but not heat) into the expanse below. In the subsequent makeover of 1993, it was decided that the mural was too large and impractical to maintain and a much dark color scheme was adopted. With the 2005 re-design, more light reflecting colors were adopted returning much of the original light. Still, one cannot help but lament the loss of such a magnificent work of art.    

FOOTNOTE

  1. Before EPCOT, the record was held by the original construction of the Magic Kingdom (with WDW infrastructure).     

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