Monday 4 March 2019

Newlyn artist and horses in World War One

A rare opportunity to see paintings by Alfred Munnings at the National Army Museum.  Most of these paintings of men and horses in action in World War One are usually in Canada, in the Canadian War Museum. Munnings was an official war artist, painting the Canadian Expeditionary Force in action.
He went out to the Western Front late in 1917. In the years before that, he had been in Cornwall, one of the Newlyn colony of artists. The then vicar of St Hilary, Bernard Walke, talks fondly of him in his memoirs (published in the early 1930s).
The colours of Munning's paintings are bright and vibrant, very much the palette of the Newlyn-based artists painting scenes of Cornwall and the sea. One of his war paintings in the collection is of a cow (in the Jura).  Munnings, famed for his studies of horses, remarks that he had once bought a cow in Cornwall to study as a model and it had proved one of the best investments he had ever made.

We're hoping to continue our project, Heart of Conflict, in Cornwall marking the centenary of the end of World War One. We're waiting to hear if we have funding to take the work further.

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