The cookers near Villers-Bretonneux

Accession Number ART02296.008
Collection type Art
Measurement sheet: 52.2 x 78.6 cm; image: 43.8 x 55.6 cm
Object type Print
Physical description lithograph on paper
Place made United Kingdom: England, Greater London, London
Date made 1918
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918

Item copyright: Copyright expired - public domain

Public Domain Mark This item is in the Public Domain


Depicts a field kitchen near Villers Bretonneux, Western Front, with cooks standing around a field kitchen preparing meal. Horse drawn wagons are passing by to the right of the kitchen, while a queue of soldiers appears on the left. This lithograph reflects Dyson's admiration for the 'support units striving to provide the infantry with basic comforts, together with his fascination with eccentric AIF cooks'. He suspected that the Australian units selected their cooks, not for their abilities as chefs but 'for the stories that can be told about them to other units'. Will Dyson was the first Australian official war artist to visit the front during the First World War, travelling to France in December 1916, remaining there until May 1917, making records of the Australian involvement in the war. He was formally appointed as an official war artist, attached to the AIF, in May 1917, working in France and London throughout the war. His commission was terminated in March 1920.