November Painting of the Month – Remembrance

Remembrance Sunday is such an important event in our calendar. Not for its reference to war but to remember and honour human sacrifice. Even with our troubled present we are fortunate in Europe for those who paid the highest price for our freedom and Liberty. 

The Imperial War Museum has a wonderful collection of art from the twentieth century conflicts but one always stays in my mind when I think of remembrance.

Darsie, Japp, the regimental Band, First World War oil painting, imperial war museum
Darsie Japp, The Regimental Band, c1918, oil on canvas, 91cm x 71cm, The Imperial War Museum

The Regimental Band (1918) by Darsie Japp portrays a simple study of the bugler on his horse as the parade passes by. There are so many motifs to enjoy in this sublime, yet disturbing painting. The bugle, the horse, the soldier, the frightening explosions, and the silence. I like the image of the poppy at the centre of the blasts. View this painting in the quiet of your own solitude and see the unnatural colours, the underlying terror of conflict …and hear the silence, where the explosions should be drowning the sound of the bugle.

Japp was born in Liverpool, but trained in London before enlisting for the military in 1914. He rose to the rank of Major and fought in Macedonia, alongside his artist friend, Stanley Spencer. In 1918 they were both commissioned to produce ‘Art from the First World War’ by the Government and contributed to the National Hall of Remembrance, a collection that is now mainly retained by The Imperial War Museum.

“The Last Post”

In Adlestrop, our own village, the Remembrance Service will be conducted online as the war memorial is inside the church and cannot be used for public worship currently.

The Regimental Band © Imperial War Museum

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