The Disney Diaries

Snow White Grotto

Today, I’ll be posting a photograph of Snow White Grotto. While researching, I found this particular story of its development a fascinating one. Which for me, makes the grotto more significant.

It was the year of 1961 when Snow White Grotto was installed on the eastern side of Sleeping Beauty’s castle, near the wishing well. Before installment, there was an issue with the white, marble figurines themselves. It all started when these figurines were given anonymously to Walt Disney from Italy. Disney obviously loved it, but there was a problem with proportion: Snow White’s height was similar to the dwarfs. So, Disney gives John Hench (Disney’s Renaissance artist and a brilliant genius with many trades) the task of creating a solution while keeping their sizes in mind.

Due to Hench’s brilliance, he figured out a way to incorporate them into the park. In DisneyParks Blog, it states, “Then he found an ingenious and elegant solution. The major elements of the scene were scaled to create the illusion of distance and height and Snow White was placed at the top of the diorama, where she stands majestically above the scene. This created a forced perspective. Viewed from the adjacent footbridge, Snow White appears perfectly proportioned in relation to her friends. Hench did such a magical job creating the scene that two other Disney Parks have since incorporated the montage – disproportion and all – in their Castle forecourts (Tokyo Disneyland and Hong Kong Disneyland).”

Additionally, the song “I’m Wishing” from the animated film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, plays from the grotto. Having a water fall flowing and the greenery that surrounds the place be the vignette to Snow White Grotto, makes the site serene and just as magical as Disneyland itself. Having seeing it personally, I must say it’s a great place to escape the crowds and enjoy the historic and artistic qualities in its entirety. With that said, if you’re planning on going to Disneyland soon, I highly suggest making a mini pit stop when you visit.

-Michelle

P.S.- For a little more information on the magnificent John Hench, please check out this link: https://d23.com/walt-disney-legend/john-hench/

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Disneyland, No.148, ca. 2017. Anaheim, California.

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