An exhibition exploring war through the eyes of some of Australia’s best known artists was officially opened by the Minister for Creative Industries, Martin Foley, at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia.
Follow the Flag: Australian Artists and War 1914–45 brings together more than 150 works of art created by Australian artists in response to the First and Second World Wars.
It tells stories both personal and epic, and reflects on a diversity of attitudes and experiences of war.
The exhibition showcases the work of many well-known Australian artists, including Arthur Streeton, Albert Tucker, Russell Drysdale, Joy Hester and Max Dupain, as well as works by soldiers and unknown artists.
Alongside paintings, works on paper, photographs and sculptures, are priceless ‘trench art’ displays, including jewellery fashioned by soldiers on the front from shrapnel and plane debris.
The NGV is one of the many Victorian cultural organisations shining a light on the commitment and sacrifice of those who served in, or were affected by, the First World War, as part of commemorations for the ANZAC Centenary.
Others include Melbourne Museum’s The WW1 Centenary Exhibition featuring objects from London’s Imperial War Museums; War Pictures: Australians at the Cinema 1914-1918 at Australian Centre for the Moving Image; Victorian Opera’s Remembrance; and Arts Centre Melbourne’s Black Diggers, which tells the story of our Aboriginal ANZACs.
Quotes attributable to the Minister for Creative Industries, Martin Foley
“This year marks 100 years since ANZAC forces landed at Gallipoli, and the NGV’s exhibition offers a way for us to pause and reflect on the courage and sacrifice of those who served.”
“Follow the Flag is one of a number of events across Victoria that will connect us with the experiences of our ANZACs, whether through art, historical artefacts, dance, theatre or music.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020