Saturday, September 17, 2005
Gassed, 1919, John Singer Sargent.
Sargent, a leading society artist, was given an assignment by the British government to depict "Anglo-American co-operation" in World War I. He ended up painting a scene of a mustard gas attack that he witnessed on the western front. In the background, and you have to see this painting in person to notice it, there's a football match going on regardless of the procession of horror in the front (click on the photo for a larger version). I first saw this painting in Boston at the MFA. It's now back at the Imperial War Museum in London.