~ Poet: Lewis Carroll ~

Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll

Lewis Carroll‘s famous nonsense poem Jabberwocky has been adapted to the screen many times. This version from 2020 by Dutch artist Sjaak Rood was produced for TED-Ed as part of a series of collaborations between educators and film animators. Music is by Mark Nieuwenhuis with narration by Jack Cutmore-Scott. It was a 2021 finalist in the Ó Bhéal Poetry Film Competition in Ireland.

Moving Poems has previously shared two other film versions of Jabberwocky as well as an adaptation of Carroll’s The Mad Gardener’s Song.

Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll

This “experimental visual poetry” directed by Katie Williamson stars Walter McCord in an imaginative riff on Lewis Carroll’s great nonsense poem. The soundtrack includes, if I’m not mistaken, a track by the Master Musicians of Jajouka.

The Mad Gardener’s Song by Lewis Carroll

This is The Gardener’s Dream, a terrific poetry film by the Moscow-based animator Valeriy Kozhin. It was recently featured in a post by Alison Pezanoski-Browne at Tin House Reels. As Pezanoski-Browne writes,

Kozhin’s film transforms Lewis Carroll’s poem “The Mad Gardener’s Song” into a surrealist adventure that maintains the spirit of the poet’s work and incorporates a wildness that is all Kozhin’s.

The film conveys an abstracted conceit of a logic game. Using paper cut-outs and puppets, porcelain dolls, and minuscule objects, Kozhin draws on images of childhood. Using a color palate rich in natural pigments, his work also feels like more classic animation–a mixture of Marc Davis era Disney and Jan Svankmajer, one of Valeriy’s favorite filmmakers.

“I see a new world with my eyes when I am inside a film,” Kozhin said. “I think that cinema is a young art. We have the great opportunity to make more than we can imagine in animation.”

That imagination, which seems to be equally enamored with the romantic and grotesque, has created an alluring lullaby for those boys and girls who still read under the covers after the lights have been turned off.

Click through for a bio of the filmmaker. Kozhin has also uploaded a version in Russian, Сон Садовника.

Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll

Not a video poem, but a video of an interactive digital installation, a piece called Dinner Party, which involves the animated text of “Jabberwocky.” Artist Hye Yeon Nam explains,

Dinner party provides a space where people meet and interact with Lewis Carroll’s poem, Jabberwocky, inspired creatures hiding in the shadows.

At first glance, the single chair and place set for one, seemingly provides a solitary dinner; rather the interaction offers a communication between oneself and the imaginary creatures. Initially gathered under the shadow cast by the plate, disturbed creatures will nervously scatter attempting to go around any other shadow cast on the table. A period of quiet status will encourage the creatures to reveal themselves.

Zach Lieberman and Jeremy Rotsztain are listed as collaborators. I’m not sure who created the video itself, but I’ll credit Hye Yeon Nam in the filmmaker category, since I don’t have a separate taxonomy for video artists here.