Alice Baker (set decorator)

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Alice Baker
OccupationSet decorator
Years active1987-present

Alice Baker is a set decorator best known for her work on the film 12 Years a Slave. With production designer Adam Stockhausen, Baker was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Production Design for her work on the period drama.[1]


12 Years a Slave[edit]

Baker served as set decorator on the film 12 Years a Slave, Steve McQueen's 2013 adaptation of Solomon Northup's 1853 memoir. As the historical drama was shot in New Orleans, but took place in Saratoga Springs, New York and on a ship as well as in Louisiana, Baker and Stockhausen used stereoscopic images and other historical documents to guide their development of sets that resembled the Northeast and steamships in the 1830s, in addition to using Louisiana plantations with some original buildings still in place.[2] Faced with a limited budget as well as recently released films dealing with the same historical era that had just used many of the available sets (for example, Django Unchained and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter), Baker and Stockenhausen were challenged to develop an aesthetic authentic to the period, but visually distinct from the other films.[3] They collected original items from antique shops, museums, and personal homes, in Mississippi and Louisiana, to decorate the sets.[4]

In addition to the Academy Award nomination, Baker and Stockhausen were also nominated for a BAFTA Award for Best Production Design,[5] a Critics' Choice Movie Award Best Art Direction,[6] and the Art Directors Guild Award for Excellence in Production Design for a Period Film,[7] among other awards.

I Saw the Light[edit]

Baker also served as set decorator on the 2015 Hank Williams biopic, I Saw the Light, starring Tom Hiddleston. Shot in Shreveport, Louisiana, Baker worked with production designer Merideth Boswell and another limited budget that nevertheless used 62 different locations to recreate the environment of Williams's life and career.[8]


  1. ^ "The 86th Academy Awards (2013) Nominees and Winners". Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on March 28, 2014. Retrieved August 30, 2014.
  2. ^ Murphy, Mekado (January 22, 2014). "Below the Line: Production Design on '12 Years a Slave'". The New York Times. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  3. ^ Appelo, Tim (March 1, 2014). "'We Gave Leonardo DiCaprio His Best 'Gatsby' Line,' Say Production Designers". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  4. ^ Whitlock, Cathy (February 28, 2014). "Tour the Sets of 12 Years a Slave, American Hustle, Gravity, The Great Gatsby, and Her". Architectural Digest. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  5. ^ Chitwood, Adams (2014). "12 YEARS A SLAVE Named Best Film at BAFTA Awards; GRAVITY Wins Best Director and Best British Film". Collider. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  6. ^ "Complete list of winners for the 19th Critics' Choice Movie Awards". Los Angeles Times. December 16, 2013. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  7. ^ "18th ADG AWARD WINNERS & NOMMINEES CREW". Art Directors Guild. February 8, 2014. Retrieved 2018-02-23.
  8. ^ Lybarger, Dan (2014-12-12). "Arkansan makes movies look good". Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Retrieved 2018-02-23.

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