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37 Undertones of War by Paintings by Norman Neasom (1915 - 2010)

Undertones of War

Stipple watercolour - Signed and dated 1937

Image Area 5ins x 7ins

The first image Norman can remember was of the first World War when at the age of 2, his Mother held him up to a window to see the Zeppelin on a bombing raid over the Austin Factory in 1917

In August 1915 Blunden was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Royal Sussex Regiment and served with them right up to the end of WW1, taking part in the actions at Ypres and the Somme, and receiving the Military Cross in the process. Unusual for a junior infantry officer, Blunden survived nearly two years in the front line without physical injury, but for the rest of his life bore mental scars from his experiences. With characteristic self-deprecation he attributed his survival to his diminutive size: he made "an inconspicuous target". Although he wrote many war poems and the account of his own frequently traumatic experiences was published in 1928 under the title "Undertones of War"

As we know, Norman was extremely troubled by the events of the Great War and although it was over before he totally understood the conflict, the graphic detail of Blunden's book and his poetry would remain with him and have a lasting influence on his thoughts and his work

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