Modern British Art by Robert Austin: Our Heritage:Winston Churchill, 1943 |





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Robert Austin:
Our Heritage:Winston Churchill, 1943

Unmounted (ref: 2606)

Signed and dated in the plate

Lithograph, 25 1/4 x 20 in. (64. 2 x 50.8 cm)

Tags: print British School of Rome portraits war WW2 bis

Exhibited: WW2 - War Pictures by British Artists, Morley College London, 28 October -23 November 2016, cat 123. 

Literature: WW2 - War Pictures by British Artists, Edited by Sacha Llewellyn & Paul Liss, July 2016, cat 123, page 164.

Inscribed ‘printed for the passengers and staff of London Transport to recall other occasions of the Nation’s will and high purpose’

Printed by the Baynard Press

Provenance:Artist’s daughter.

This rare lithographic proof comes directly from the artist’s family. The London Transport Museum has the same poster in its collection, together with versions of the design in a number of earlier states.

The Underground Group (later London Transport) produced a wide variety of posters during the First and Second World Wars.There was, however, a marked difference between the propaganda element of the posters in both wars: the posters published in the GreatWar presented the conflict as an idealised struggle and urged men to enlist, whereas the posters of the Second World War stressed the individual’s role in helping the war effort at home and also aspired to lift the nation’s spirits.

Many London Transport posters were issued as a series, for maximum impact. Robert Sargent Austin was commissioned to produce the Our  Heritage Series, depicting heroic British Leaders, such as Nelson,Drake, Pitt and finally Churchill.The aim of these posters was to boost the morale within the travelling public by reminding them what the nation was fighting for.

The anecdote about Churchill that during the war he responded to a request to cut funding to the art with the rebuff, 'then what are we fighting for' is unsubstantiated.

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