'Soldiers' (Negroes and Women)

Place Oceania: Australia, Queensland, Brisbane
Accession Number ART92619
Collection type Art
Measurement Overall: 36 x 26.9 cm (irreg)
Object type Drawing
Physical description indian ink, chinese white, pen and black ink and black wash on paper
Maker Friend, Donald
Place made Australia: Queensland, North Queensland, Cairns
Date made 1982
Conflict Second World War, 1939-1945

Item copyright: AWM Licensed copyright


In 1942, Donald Friend enlisting with the AIF, was posted as a gunner to the artillery unit near Albury. In 1945, Friend was selected for appointment as official war artist. He travelled to Morotai, Labuan and Balikpapan, recording sights which confronted him and drawing in particular on the expressive potential of human form. Friend was extraordinarily prolific, producing 53 paintings and 143 drawings for the Memorial. This work depicts American soldiers standing outside a bar with Australian women in Cairns. The figures of the men and women verge on caricature . In 1946 Friend was living at the artist's community Merioola in Sydney while awaiting demobilisation, before travelling to Cairns and the Torres Strait.