Chinese Labour Corps
ID numberART00135
Collection typeArt
TitleChinese Labour Corps
Measurementsheet: 32.9 x 49.6 cm; image: 32.9 x 49.6 cm
Object typeDrawing
MakerBenson, George
Place madeFrance
Date made1918
Physical descriptionwatercolour, pencil on card
CopyrightAWM copyright
DescriptionDepicts a double row of Chinese laborers walking through a street in the French village of Coisy. A soldier stands in front of the Chinese men. George Courtney Benson (1886-1960) was a painter and muralist. He studied at the National Gallery School, Melbourne from 1903 and later worked for the 'Bulletin' in Sydney, then as an illustrator and cartoonist for Melbourne 'Punch'. As a result of his drawings at Gallipoli and in France during the First World War, he was appointed official war artist in 1918. He served with the 3rd Field Artillery Brigade and from June 1916 was with the British Expeditionary Forces in France. After the war, he continued to work for the War Records Section and returned to Melbourne in 1919 to complete works for the War Memorial and spent the next decade painting watercolour landscapes and working as a book illustrator. In 1931 he moved to Western Australia to undertake work on murals. Benson enlisted in the Australian Citizens Military Forces from 1940 to 1943, working in camouflage.