Australian official war artists - First World War

There were two separate commissioning schemes for artists during the First World War.

Ten Australian artists living in England received appointments for generally not more than three months and were expected to produce at least 25 drawings during this time. This scheme was administered by the Australian High Commission in London, with official war correspondent Charles Bean as adviser. These artists received honorary commissions as officers.

Five artists already serving with the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) were selected by Bean to be attached to the Australian War Records Section. (J. S. McDonald was also selected but ill health prevented him from taking up his appointment.) These artists are also official war artists, although they have previously been referred to as Australian War Records Section artists.

The following three sculptors were employed in the Modelling Subsection of the Australian War Records Section, under a different scheme to the official war artists. The Modelling Subsection employed a number of sculptors, painters, carpenters and other skilled people to produce the Memorial’s topographical plan models and First World War dioramas.


Up front - faces of Australia at war (on display 1998–2000)

Shaping memory: sculpture at the Australian War Memorial (on display 2004)

George Lambert: Gallipoli and Palestine landscapes (on display 2007)

Articles and publications

Up front: faces of Australia at war. Catalogue essay by Elena Taylor, 1998

Arthur Streeton, Cathedral interior, ART93099

Will Dyson, Company awaiting relief, the Caterpillar, near Ville-sur-Ancre, ART02250.003

Charles Bryant, HMAS Sydney's fight with a Zeppelin in the North Sea, ART12418

George Lambert, Balcony of troopers' ward, 14th Australian General Hospital, Abbassia, ART02815

H. Septimus Power, Bringing up the guns, ART03334

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