Through the looking-glass

Lewis Carroll
1832 to 1898
Didier Mutel

The artist Didier Mutel has not only made his own version of Lewis Caroll's Alice's adventures in Wonderland, but also of the sequel Through the looking-glass.

Lewis Carroll, Didier Mutel, *Through the looking-glass* (2004: page 65)
Page 65

Lewis Carroll, Didier Mutel, Through the looking-glass (2004: page 65)

A crimson coloured parallel universe

This edition also underwent the same complex series of processes as Mutel's version of Alice's adventures in Wonderland, though on this occasion crimson was the single colour used for all the etchings and pages. Mutel produced 50 etchings for this book; the edition comprised 51 copies. Inspired by the title, he decided to print all the texts of this book as mirror images (done with a click of the mouse when using digital techniques). As a result, the reader finds himself in a parallel universe as well: he has to fetch a mirror if he wants to read the text properly.

Read more: Alice's adventures in Wonderland.

Lewis Carroll, Didier Mutel, *Through the looking-glass* (2004: pages 64-65)

Lewis Carroll, Didier Mutel, Through the looking-glass (2004: pages 64-65)

Bibliographical description:

Description: Through the looking-glass, and what Alice found there / by Lewis Carroll ; with 50 ill. after John Tenniel and 50 copper plate engravings by Didier Mutel. – Paris : Didier Mutel, 2004. – 224 p., [50] bl. pl. : ill. ; 38 cm.
Printer: Didier Mutel (Paris)
Edition: 51 copies
This copy: Number 24/40 of 51 on Arches and Sekishu-Shi
Note: Texts printed as mirror images; uncut; with cassette; signed by the artist
Shelf-mark: KW KOOPM E 96


  • Marie Akar, ‘Didier Mutel. Graveur et artiste du livre’, in: Art & métiers du livre, 285 (juillet-août 2011), pp. 40-51.
  • Paul van Capelleveen, 'Didier Mutel', in: Artists & others. The imaginative French book in the 21st century. Koopman Collection, National Library of the Netherlands. Nijmegen, Vantilt Publishers, 2016, p. 70-77.
  • Johanna Drucker, ‘The art of the written image’, in: Johanna Drucker, Figuring the word. essays on books, writing, and visual poetics. New York City, Granary Books, 1998, pp. 57-75.
  • Didier Mutel, ‘A mythical animal encountered in unknown lands’, in: The artist book in a global world. A workshop in Poestenkill, New York, August 2002. (Wulf D. von Lucius, Gunnar A. Kaldewey, Eds.). Stuttgart, Lucius & Lucius, 2003, pp. 19-32.
  • Timothy Young, ‘If it is beautiful, it is useful: a few words for Didier Mutel and his unheeded manifesto’, in: Didier Mutel, Acide brut manifesto. Berkeley, CA., Codex Foundation, 2011, pp. 3-7.
  • Timothy Young, ‘Meet Captain Acid’, [published 11 October 2014 on website: ‘The Design Observer Group’].