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Disneyland 50th Anniversary

How many children have stood at this very spot, eyes wide with wonder at their first glimpse of Sleeping Beauty Castle, since Disneyland park first opened fifty years ago? I was one. On our annual visits to grandma’s house, we never failed to make a stop at Disneyland park. I’m sure that some of my romantic ideas about architecture were formed as I wandered these fabulous grounds.

When the Disneyland 50th Anniversary gala was announced, I jumped at the chance to paint this place of golden joyous memories. I was given special permission to set up my easel on Main Street to paint a Plein Air study of Sleeping Beauty Castle, soon to be festooned with decorations, flags, and banners celebrating Disneyland’s 50th Anniversary. I couldn’t resist painting my own family, buying balloons at the lower right of the canvas, amongst the diverse crowd.

The drama of sunset in my Disneyland 50th Anniversary suggests an end of an era, while the glowing lights at the base of the castle remind us that a new age of imagination and celebration awaits.

  • Thomas Kinkade has hidden twelve N’s in Disneyland 50th Anniversary, in honor of his beloved wife Nanette. In honor of the fiftieth anniversary, there are also fifty hidden silhouettes of Mickey Mouse. This image is being released with a standard number size of 1,955 – the year the park first opened in Anaheim, California.
  • Sleeping Beauty Castle is shown in its luminous fiftieth anniversary attire – painted and adorned to be the centerpiece and “crown” jewel of the fiftieth anniversary celebration. Complete with gold drapery, regal banners, and five crowns that sit on each of the turrets, resplendent with custom Swarovski crystals.
  • Thom has included his entire family in Disneyland 50th Anniversary, including his wife Nanette and their four daughters: Merritt, Chandler, Winsor, and Everett.
  • Not only was it an honor to be asked to paint the commemorative image of Disneyland’s 50th Anniversary celebration, but also a delight as Disneyland holds many cherished memories for Thom and his family.
  • While the centerpiece of the painting is Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, Thom was careful to include the statue dedicated on November 18, 1993 of Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse entitled “Partners.”
  • Disneyland 50th Anniversary began as a Plein Air study with Thom spending more than ten hours on site capturing the initial painting. The final painting has been executed in a style known as Romantic Realism, a favorite genre for Thom.
Title Disneyland 50th Anniversary
Published September 2005
Subject Location Sleeping Beauty Castle in Anaheim, California

Image Sizes

18" x 27"
24" x 36"
28" x 42"

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