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Over the Top

© courtesy of the family of the artist. Image credit: Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales

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In this work, Kennington captures the moment soldiers scramble ‘over the top’, out of a trench into no man's land to attack the enemy trench line. Many were met almost immediately by a hail of gunfire, causing great loss of life. Kennington’s works have a particular human interest. Having been a soldier, he was able to draw the images with knowledge and accuracy. Showing soldiers in training and at the Front, these prints were described by one journalist as capturing ‘the spirit of our new, young army’. Kennington was probably chosen for this subject as he had himself enlisted with the 13th (Kensington) Battalion London Regiment and fought on the Western Front in France in 1914–1915. He was wounded and discharged as unfit in 1915.

Title

Over the Top

Date

1917

Medium

lithograph on paper

Measurements

H 50.9 x W 38.2 cm

Accession number

NMW A 13169

Acquisition method

gift from H. M. Ministry of Information, 1919

Work type

Print

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National Museum Cardiff

Cathays Park, Cardiff (Caerdydd) CF10 3NP Wales

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