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The Art of Disney’s Heroes and Villains Costumes Coming to BMA in February

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The Birmingham Museum of Art (BMA) on Thursday announced its presentation of the critically acclaimed exhibition Heroes and Villains: The Art of the Disney Costume created by the Walt Disney Archives and presented by PNC.

Comprised of 70 costumes spanning nearly half a century, this captivating show takes visitors on a journey into the enchanting worlds of Disney, highlighting the innovative ways some of the iconic characters are brought to life through the artistry and imagination of their costumes.

Gaston
Beauty and the Beast (2017)
(Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures),
Walt Disney Archives, ©Disney

“The BMA is proud to work with Disney on our first major exhibition in nearly a decade, which will offer Birmingham a rare first-hand look at famous costumes that are a crucial part of Disney’s incomparable storytelling,” said Graham C. Boettcher, R. Hugh Daniel Director of the Birmingham Museum of Art. “We are grateful to our presenting sponsor PNC for making this once-in-a-lifetime show possible for our community.”

Premiering Feb. 17, 2024, and running through Aug. 18, 2024, the exhibition features a stunning collection of original works of art, including Captain Jack Sparrow’s pirate garb, Cruella De Vil’s fashionable frock, Cinderella’s glass slipper, and the Sanderson Sisters’ wicked wardrobe.

Visitors will discover the craftsmanship behind exquisite ball gowns, majestic capes, intricate uniforms, dazzling tiaras, and more. These remarkable pieces provide a captivating glimpse into the creative process behind some of Disney’s most beloved characters.

“As a national main street bank, PNC proudly supports the communities where we live and work,” said Nick Willis, PNC regional president for Greater Alabama. “We are delighted to support this special exhibition as part of our decade-long relationship with the Museum as they continue to inspire imagination and make a lasting impact on the region.”

Cinderella
Cinderella (2015)
(Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures),
Walt Disney Archives, ©Disney
Queen Narissa

Heroes and Villains: The Art of the Disney Costume showcases the work of renowned designers from Hollywood past and present, including esteemed Academy Award® winners such as Colleen Atwood, Sandy Powell, and Tony Walton, Emmy® winner Ellen Mirojnick, and Emmy nominees Eduardo Castro and Penny Rose.

Within the exhibition, visitors will be immersed in the magical “Cinderella’s Workshop” gallery, where they can admire a variety of dresses worn by the beloved fairy-tale character in different Disney adaptations. From 1997’s Rodgers and Hammerstein’s® Cinderella to 2014’s Into the Woods, the 2015 live-action reimagining of the animated classic, and the popular ABC series Once Upon a Time (TV, 2011–2018), the evolution of Cinderella’s costume is showcased in all its splendor.

The main exhibition gallery is organized into three Disney archetypes: heroes, villains, and the spaces between, dedicated to the complex and intriguing antiheroes of Disney storytelling. Alongside the displays, interactive elements allow visitors to fully engage with the enchanting world of Disney costuming.

Enchanted (2007)
(Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures),
Walt Disney Archives, ©Disney

Attendees can marvel at Belle’s ball gown from 2017’s Beauty and the Beast, as well as the enchanting costumes for Giselle, Prince Edward, and Queen Narissa from Enchanted (2007). Visitors can explore the striking dresses of the stepsisters from 2015’s Cinderella and Letha’s unforgettable dress in 1978’s Return from Witch Mountain.

Additionally, take in the costumes of the Evil Queen and Hook from Once Upon a Time (TV, 2011–2018) and Mary Poppins’ dress from 2018’s Mary Poppins Returns.

Following its successful run at the Museum of Pop Culture in Seattle and the Henry Ford Museum in Detroit, the Birmingham Museum of Art is proud to be the third venue to host this extraordinary exhibition. Previously, Heroes and Villains: The Art of the Disney Costume made its debut at the 2019 D23 Expo, the Ultimate Disney Fan Event presented by D23: The Official Disney Fan Club.

Tickets will go on sale on the Museum’s website this October. For updated information on hours, tickets, and more, please visit the museum’s website at www.artsbma.org.