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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.

Interesting canvas. I think the poem that best portrayed something like this was Dulce et Decorum est (pro patria mori) by Wilfred Owen.
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