Skip to Content

Must see Exhibits at the Walt Disney Family Museum

Sharing is caring!

Can you believe it? Even after living more than half my life in the San Francisco Bay Area I have never been to the Walt Disney Family Museum. Gasp! I know! That's why when the Walt Disney Studios invited me to an exclusive trip to tour the Walt Disney Family Museum in honor of the Disney/Pixar Coco Event I couldn't help but say yes! Like jumping up and down screaming yes! Best of all, just in time for the release of The Lion King on Digital and Disney Movies Anywhere August 15th, and on Blu-ray August 29th, the Walt Disney Family Museum is featuring the exhibit, Deja View: The Art of Andreas Deja, the accomplished and versatile character animator of The Lion King's most menacing villain, Scar.

Walt Disney Family Museum

Walt Disney Family Museum

The Walt Disney Family Museum features the animations, innovations, and inspirations from the remarkable life story of Walt Disney, who created a distinctly American legacy that transformed the entertainment world.

The museum itself features two stories of galleries from Walt's small beginning to his time in Hollywood, the creation of Oswald, Mickey, and the Walt Disney Studios, the decision to move to feature films, some of Walt's toughest periods, the postwar production era, and his family's personal collections and family treasures. The most memorable and somber exhibit features a collection of the fond farewells from artists around the world as they bid goodbye to Walt, as news of his passing hit the world.

Deja View: The Art of Andreas Deja

One of the featured exhibits at the Walt Disney Family Museum now through October 9th, is Deja View: The Art of Andreas Deja, located in the theater gallery. This unique exhibition showcases original works on paper and maquettes from some of Andrea Deja's most dynamic work from popular characters Scar, Jafar, Gaston, Hercules, to the much beloved Mama Odie and Lilo Pelekai. Deja View showcases Deja’s prolific and wide-ranging career, bridging the rich tradition of classic hand-drawn animation with animation’s innovative future.

The Lion King, 1994. Andreas Deja: Scar Model Sheets

Walt Disney Family Museum

(Cast resin: Scar maquette. Andreas Deja)

Walt Disney Family Museum

Andreas Deja: Watercolors on Paper

Walt Disney Family Museum

Check out more of Andreas Deja's work below.

Awaking Beauty: The Art of Eyvind Earle

In addition to Andreas Deja's work at the Walt Disney Family Museum, you can also check out another Eyvind Earle's art at the Awaking Beauty exhibit now through January 8th, 2018, located in the Diane Disney Miller Exhibition Hall (located a short walk from the main museum).

The 18th original exhibit showcases the life and work of Eyvind Earle best known as lead stylist for Walt Disney's classic feature Sleeping Beauty, and for concept art that shaped enduring favorites as Lady and the Tramp and Peter Pan.

Eyvind Earle's first-ever comprehensive museum retrospective features more than 250 works, including intricate concept artworks for Sleeping Beauty, unique scratchboards, rare examples of sculpture, companion poetry, and commercial illustrations.

Anchor Exhibits at the Walt Disney Family Museum

Some of our favorite anchor exhibits at the Walt Disney Family Museum, including the original furnishings from Walt's Disneyland Apartment above the Disneyland Firehouse. Fun fact, the light in the Firehouse at Disneyland still shines brightly to symbolize Walt Disney's spirit and presence at Disneyland.

Walt Disney Family Museum

The story behind how Walt joined the military during WWI is amazing. Although Walt was anxious to take part in the patriotic effort, he was too young to join the military. That summer, he learned about the American Ambulance Corps, a division of the Red Cross that needed drivers and had a lower age requirement. After his mom conceded to sign his birth certificate, Walt still had one hurdle, he was still too young. As soon as his mom signed the paper, Walt grabbed a pen and changed his birth date from 1901 to 1900 and was finally on his way to France.

Walt Disney Family Museum

Some of our family's favorite Disney productions are the Silly Symphonies. Disney produced 75 Silly Symphony shorts during a ten-year period from 1929 through 1939, many used to experiment with special effects and camera techniques. The concept, conceived by Walt Disney and Stalling, his first musical director, was simple: complete a musical composition first, followed by a story and animation around that score.

Walt Disney Family Museum

And then there was that one day the Disney Studio went on Strike. Yes, it happened!

Walt Disney Family Museum

One of the several benches from the Griffith Park carousel where Walt spent many years watching his daughters enjoy the carousel.

Walt Disney Family Museum

The first concept model for Disneyland. The 14-foot diameter hand-crafted model is among the most elaborate and detailed scale models in the theme park industry.

Walt Disney Family Museum
Walt Disney Family Museum

You can even catch a great view of the iconic Golden Gate Bridge from the second floor of the Walt Disney Family Museum.

Walt Disney Family Museum

Don't miss your opportunity to visit the Walt Disney Family Museum and experience the Deja View: The Art of Andreas Deja exhibit and the Awaking Beauty: The Art of Eyvind Earle exhibit before they are gone. And don't miss your chance to get to know Walt Disney's family story and the story behind Walt's innovative imagination.

Don't forget to pin this post to share with family and friends!

Must See Exhibits at the Walt Disney Family Museum

Portions of the material and expenses for the Disney Pixar Coco Movie Event have been provided courtesy of Walt Disney Studios.