This project involves painting selected Devon and Cornwall War Memorials to stimulate interest in the Centenary years of the First World War. The aim is to identify with the deep emotions communities felt all those years ago and what we're up to now. Some memorials are grand, others are simple and a few surprise in respect of location. Their design and construction meant so much then – and, hopefully, still do today. City, village and rural settings will feature. Guiding principles for paintings are: (1) Setting (2) Impact (3) Composition.
Granite crosses, obelisks, village halls and parks were common designs; stone tablets and brass plates located in churches were equally popular. Dr Todd Gray of Exeter University has influenced my approach to this project; his detailed research of War Memorials in Devon are described in his book ‘Lest Devon Forgets’. For my part, I want the paintings produced to stimulate interest in the past, connect us to the present and by association touch the future in Cornwall, as well as Devon.
Some locations are fascinating/out of the ordinary – hence the rough sketch near Polperro on the SW Coastal Path. If you know of a memorial that sits in an equally intriguing location in either of the 2 Counties I would love to know about it. You can get in touch via the Contact Section of the website
The sketches below give you an idea of how I am approaching this work. Paintings sold will raise funds for two major Service charities - the Army Benevolent Fund (ABF) and The RIFLES Care for Casualties. Take a look at the Memorials gallery on the Home page to see progress.
The first paintings completed were exhibited in the Mall Galleries, London in May 2014.