Returning to the Trenches

Christopher Richard Wynne Nevinson British

Not on view

Unable to enlist in the British army for health reasons, Nevinson volunteered in fall 1914 for a Red Cross ambulance unit serving northern France and Belgium. Here, he conveyed the dynamism of a seemingly impenetrable line of French soldiers, or poilus, whom he would have certainly encountered. Dressed in their distinctive uniforms, they advance with purpose and determination, an effect amplified by the faceted forms that capture a sense of endless, repetitive movement and reflect Nevinson’s earlier association with Futurism. Individual features are minimized and further obscured by capes, hats, raised bayonets, and bladelike shields, while the broad, sweeping strokes that depict the men’s lower bodies unify the group. Nevinson made a painting, drawings, and a woodcut of this image; the woodcut appeared in the second issue of BLAST, the "War Number."

Returning to the Trenches, Christopher Richard Wynne Nevinson (British, London 1889–1946 London), Drypoint

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