War Art in Canada: An Illustrated History
Hardcover, 276 pages
The Canadian Art Library, 2022
over 200 full-colour illustrations
Throughout Canadian history, conflict has been a catalyst of change, one that has transformed communities across the nation. War Art in Canada explores the universal theme of war through the country’s visual and cultural past. Weaving together artworks and stories to inform and enlighten us, author Laura Brandon navigates both peaceful and brutal subject matter. By presenting the dynamic and, at times, surprising visual legacies of conflict, she encourages readers to question assumptions about our country’s military past.
The art created from conflict is exceptional in its diversity, and Brandon has assembled an arsenal of conflict-related cultural media, including posters, sketches, photographs, films, and sculptures. This comprehensive study showcases a stunning range of creators, such as A.Y. Jackson, Alex Colville, and Rebecca Belmore, and ventures far beyond the familiar narratives of Western battle painting by including Indigenous war art practices, passed down through generations in what we now call Canada. Ultimately, it provides new insights into our country’s deep and often disturbing relationship with combat.