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The Strafing, 1916

  • oil paint, canvas
  • 40.8 x 50.7 cm
  • Inv. 2009-A

Public Domain

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The painter C.R.W. Nevinson is a key figure in twentieth-century British art. After the outbreak of WWI, he joined the Friends Ambulance Service as a volunteer and worked in Dunkirk, Woesten and Saint-Pierre and elsewhere. At the front he was faced with the inhuman conditions in the trenches. He returned to London and painted a series of war scenes in one great whirl of activity. In 1916 he showed these works together in a controversial exhibition. This was one of the paintings in that exhibition. Its title is The Strafing, which means a low-flying air attack on targets on the ground. In such paintings as this, the artist gave a modern form of expression to a new type of war, one in which man had for the first time become subordinate to the machine. The composition is dominated by the explosion in the background. The soldiers have been reduced to tiny figures that can hardly be discerned in the landscape. They are in a trench that cuts across this unrecognisably ruined landscape.


C.R.W. Nevinson RKD Wikidata
Hampstead 1889 - London 1946
painters (artists)AAT

Title The Strafing
Date 1916
Period 20th century
Signatures, inscriptions, and markings signatures (names) bottom right: C.R.W. NEVINSON
Collection paintings AAT
Object type oil paintings (visual works) AAT
Inventory number 2009-A
Acquisition credit purchase
Daniel Katz Family Trust
Current whereabouts Work currently not on display
IIIF Manifest
Art & Architecture Thesaurus 300015636 landscapes AAT
300189808 figures (representations) AAT
Keywords Iconclass 23T27(20) modern division of historical epochs ~ centuries (20) Iconclass
45 warfare; military affairs Iconclass
31E23471 violent death by bomb, hand-grenade Iconclass
31EE23471 violent death by bomb, hand-grenade - EE - death not certain; wounded person Iconclass
45A1 war Iconclass
45B the soldier; the soldier's life Iconclass
45C16 firearms Iconclass
45C161 ammunition Iconclass
45C17 projectiles, explosives, etc. Iconclass
45C17(BOMB) projectiles, explosives, etc. (BOMB) Iconclass
45C17(GUNPOWDER) projectiles, explosives, etc.: gunpowder Iconclass
45D21 land forces Iconclass
45D313 private soldier Iconclass
45H1 (military) attack Iconclass
45H31 bombardment Iconclass
45H31(+4) bombardment (+ air force) Iconclass
45K111 trenches Iconclass
61D(BELGIUM) geographical names of countries, regions, mountains, rivers, etc. (names of cities and villages excepted) (BELGIUM) Iconclass
61D(FLANDERS) geographical names of countries, regions, mountains, rivers, etc. (names of cities and villages excepted) (FLANDERS) Iconclass
School / Style Expressionist (style) AAT
Modernist AAT
Topstukken uit de Groote Oorlog : Van Virginie Loveling to Lou Tseng-Tsian / Mark Vanvaeck. - [s.l.] : [s.n.], [s.a.] (p.11)
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