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The Look-out

BRANGWYN, Sir Frank William (1867 - 1956)

The Look-out - Frank Brangwyn
The Look-out - Frank Brangwyn

Date: 1917

Media: lithograph on paper

Acquired: 1919; Presented by Ministry of Information

Accession Number: NWM A 13174

Collection: The Great War: Britain's Efforts and Ideals

A sailor looks out to sea, keeping watch for signs of the enemy.  The, dominant, diagonal guns cut across the entire image.  Brangwyn has successfully captured the harsh sea conditions with choppy waves and the wind catching the sailor’s coat. 

Brangwyn’s subject reflects his interest in the sea. In many of his prints he has exploited the particular quality of lithography that enables artists to create prints similar to sketches and drawings.  Brangwyn was deeply affected by the destruction and loss of life in the war, particularly in Belgium, where he had been born.  He was never appointed an official war artist, but produced many further lithographs to support various charities. 

Brangwyn was born in Bruges to an Anglo-Welsh father and Welsh mother from Brecon. The family moved back to Britain and by the age of fifteen Brangwyn was studying under designer and socialist William Morris. As he became successful as a painter, etcher and lithographer, Brangwyn began to travel widely across the world. He had an international reputation at the time of undertaking this commission and was a member of the Senefelder Club, which promoted the medium of lithography.

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