Art Collections Online
The Reconstruction of Belgium
CLAUSEN, George (1852 - 1944)
Media: lithograph on paper
Acquired: 1919; Presented by Ministry of Information
Accession Number: NMW A 13154
Collection: The Great War: Britain's Efforts and Ideals
The ruins are being restored, new structures are rising. The words carved on the monument indicate the strength (fort) of Belgium. The crowd signify unity and positivity.
Clausen accompanied this image with text that stressed the continuity of humanity, ‘Old Mother Earth ‘carrying on’ … even while we are doing our best to make it hideous’. He stated, ‘I believe that when the war is over, the horrors of it will fade from men’s minds like a bad dream; and that they will instinctively…resume peaceful activities.’
Clausen trained at the South Kensington art schools. He was a founding member of the New English Art Club and was elected Professor of Painting at the Royal Academy in 1904. He was a well-respected artists and was appointed an official war artist in 1917.