This week from the Vinylmation Vault we will be looking at one of my all time favorites in my collection, the Park 5 “Disneyland” 9” with an LE of 800. There are so many reasons to love this one but for me I just love that 50’s and 60’s commercial colorful art surrounded by the classic attractions from Disneyland.
I have only a few of the 9” Vinylmations in my collection and not surprising they are the old Mickey mold. There just looked better that way. Actually I have only eight of the 9” vinylmations. But the few I do have I absolutely love and they all have that special something that necessitated me in collecting these larger than life Vinylmations. Okay that’s a bit much but you get the picture that I love these special Vinyls.
Growing up I was intrigued by the simple and elegant illustrative art that has been embraced by one of my favorite artists in this genre, Mary Blair. Her work of art and animation are spread across Disneyland; Disney World, as well as a few of the other parks as well. One of her most well known piece is the work she created character designs for enduring attractions such as “It’s a Small World”. But the one I was most taken by, as a kid was the giant mosaic piece she did at the Contemporary Resort wall. Finally after 42 years later I got to see it in person and it was just awe inspiring and mesmerizing. She has that simple classic look that is just timeless.
More recently I learned about another great artist and his extraordinary artwork he has created in the Disney form. Josh Agle or “Shag” as he is better known as. His work I would describe as Stylized graphics with an inspirational feel.
His artwork balances beautifully with the classic Disney design. His art does go beyond Disney and I would recommend anyone to look up him up name and see what his work. When doing the research for this article I found out how Josh Agle got the name Shag. “The Shag name started in about 1987 when I decided to sign that on my paintings. It was a shortened contraction of my first and last name (Josh Agle). I never really intended to be called Shag, but that’s sort of what happened; now almost everyone calls me by that name.”*
With a contemporary chic look, like Mary Blair and “Shag”, with vibrant and colorful “Retro inspired” colors in squares, rectangles, parallelograms and the rest of the Algebraic shapes cover the entire 9” Vinyl Mickey! Nestled between these colorful shapes are classic Disneyland icons on the front and the back.
In the front there is Mark Twain’s Riverboat on Mickeys face, on Mickey’s tummy is the famous Casey Jones Jr. Circus Trains and rounding up in the front is one of the Jungle Cruise boats making waves on Mickeys right foot.
Moving to Mickeys back right foot there’s the Horse Drawn Trolley with the Rocket to the Moon’s Moonliner making home on Mickeys left hip pocket. Then of course there’s Sleeping Beauty’s Castle on the back of Mickey’s head and finally on the back of the right ear there’s Tinkerbelle flying and spreading pixie dust everywhere.
Though the colors that were used on the vinylmation differ from the actual item that was symbolized, I still feel that the each icon was well characterized in the color format that was used and in some cases I like the artist colors a bit more. And more importantly is that the drawing and shapes work so well together.
Only on a 9” Mickey Mold be it old or new can so much creativity can be shared. However, some of the 3” Vinylmations have shown that if done correctly can share the same feel. Its sad that the stopped making the 9” mold as there are so many other great ideas that could of be shared among the collecting community. Sadly there were just too many poorly designed 9” Vinylmations that were being released. But that is only a guess. Thank goodness though for the custom artist as they take a 9” and create some amazing pieces of art.
Artbeatstreet.com (For quote from his interview with Shag)