October 12, 2013 – March 30, 2014
To coincide with the 75th anniversary of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s classic motion picture The Wizard of Oz, the Farnsworth Art Museum presents The Wonderful World of Oz—Selections from the Willard Carroll/Tom Wilhite Collection.
L. (Lyman) Frank Baum’s novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz became an instant sensation upon its 1900 publication. Eventually translated into hundreds of foreign languages, the Land of Oz ultimately became a worldwide phenomenon. Oz’s greatest success, however, came with the 1939 film starring Judy Garland as Dorothy, in which she made the Academy Award-winning song Over the Rainbow a national hit and touchstone of popular culture.
Included in the Farnsworth exhibition will be the most complete surviving costume (worn by the green Lollipop Guild Munchkin), one of Dorothy’s pinafores and blouses, examples of the many illustrated versions of Baum’s books (including the finest known copy of the first edition, first state “green imprint” of Baum’s initial book in the series), rare or one-of-a-kind posters from the various motion picture and stage productions, and a remarkable array of other Oz memorabilia from the Willard Carroll / Tom Wilhite Collection. Among the major pieces to be displayed is the Hourglass that the Wicked Witch of the West uses in the 1939 film to show Dorothy “how much longer you have to be alive.” Margaret Hamilton, who played the witch, lived during her later years on Cape Island, off Newagen, Maine. Accompanying the exhibition will be a new book by John Fricke, The Wonderful World of Oz: An Illustrated History of the American Classic – with hundreds of images exclusively from the collection – to be published in October 2013 by Down East Books. Additionally, Carroll’s Oz-related book, I Toto: The Autobiography of Terry, the Dog who was Toto, will be published by Abrams in September 2013.
The Wonderful World of Oz at the Farnsworth is sponsored in part by The Goose River Exchange.
The primary media sponsor of the exhibition is Maine Home + Design.
Community Partners for The Wonderful World of Oz include Planet Toys.
Below are two excerpts from the last interview of Margaret Pellegrini, one of the last remaining Munchkins from the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz.
Margaret Pellegrini was born Margaret Williams in Tuscumbia, Alabama
.In the film, Pellegrini played a "sleepyhead" and Munchkin villager. After the film, she married Willie Pellegrini and had two children.Through the years, Pellegrini frequently appeared at surviving Munchkins of Oz festivities. She was present in 2007 when the remaining Munchkins were given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She was also named the Grand Marshall of this year's annual "Oz-Stravaganza" parade in Chittenango, New York
, but health issues prevented her from attending. Near the time of her death, she was described as a widowed great-grandmother living in Glendale, Arizona, with a room in her house devoted to her treasured Oz collectibles.
Pellegrini died on August 7, 2013, in Glendale, Arizona, of complications from a stroke she had in 2012. She was 89 years old.
M. Pellegrini - "I love kids" from Jesse Groening on Vimeo.
M. Pellegrini - "Always be Oz" from Jesse Groening on Vimeo.