Category Archives: War Artists

War and Medicine

The website of the Wellcome Institute, on the Euston Road,  gives fascinating details of its exhibition, War and Medicine. This covers the development of military medicine from the Crimean War to the present day. The website suggests that there is plenty of WW1 material, including sections on facial reconstruction, and on “shell-shock”. There will be […]

Do you know this picture?

My wife went to York recently and, in the shop of the City Art Gallery, found this postcard, which she knew I would like. It is Return to the Front:Victoria Railway Station, 1916 by Richard Jack, and seems to capture the mood of 1916 very well. These are not the naive volunteers of 1914, going […]

Places to visit

The Imperial War Museum in Lambeth has put details online of the big new exhibition (opening 30th September) to mark the 90th anniversary of the Armistice. It looks as though there will be plenty about stories of individuals, as well as exhibitions of artwork and ephemera, and a section about the founding of the museum. […]

Vorticism vs Bloomsbury at the NPG

The National Portrait Gallery is currently staging a superb exhibition of portraits by Wyndham Lewis. The best of this complicated man went into his portraits, and seeing the T.S.Eliot picture in the actual paint is a joy indeed. Its face a mask that both conceals and reveals, and the indeterminate shapes behind the chair speak […]

Wallinger’s Stones

I like Mark Wallinger’s design for a huge horse at Ashford, but his Turner Prize bear impersonation was silly, and I’m not sure about his latest effort, for the Folkestone Triennial exhibition: Mark Wallinger’s Folk Stones will be placed on the Leas and pays homage to the role played by Folkestone’s Road of Remembrance in […]

The Camden Town Group

A day in London yesterday, including a trip to Tate Britain, to see Modern Painters: The Camden Town Group. The newspaper critics have been (predictably?) sniffy about this show, but I loved it. Is this because it’s so richly pictorial, and conveys a sense of pre-War London as full of character as an Edwardian novel? […]

Wyndham Lewis

When you’re researching, you can’t help from time to time thinking “What if…?” about other subjects you might have chosen. I’ve chosen a big wide subject (the representation of the soldier in fiction from 1914 to the mid-twenties) and by and large that suits me. It means that I’ve got plenty to think about, and […]

In the Gallery where the Fat Men Go

I’m a fan of the painter CRW Nevinson – and I particularly admire the way that during the War he shed his fashionable futurist style for one that was more alive to human detail. Before the War he had been closely associated with Marinetti, and sometimes with Wyndham Lewis. His pictures reflected these influences – […]

Arf a mo, Kaiser!

One of the jolliest images in the IWM’s current poster exhibition is BertThomas’s Arf a Mo, Kaiser, from 1914. Among all the posters persuading people to enlist, eat less, or trust the government with their savings, the curators of the show remind us that the popularity of the war was also used to sell commercial […]


In London yesterday, I went to the Imperial War Museum, to see their two current exhibitions, the one based on My Boy Jack and the collection of war posters rather archly called Weapons of Mass Communication. The posters were terrific, and I bought the book. When I’ve analysed it properly, I’ll write more about it. […]