Street in Le Cateau

Accession Number ART02454
Collection type Art
Measurement sheet: 39.2 x 57.2 cm (irreg.); image: 36 x 53 cm
Object type Work on paper
Physical description watercolour with charcoal on paper
Maker Fullwood, A Henry
Place made France
Date made December 1918
Conflict Period 1910-1919
First World War, 1914-1918

Item copyright: Copyright expired - public domain

Public Domain Mark This item is in the Public Domain


Depicts a street corner in Le Cateau with two soldiers looking at ruins, a peasant wheeling a hand cart. Le Cateau was liberated from German occupation in October 1918 and was situated behind the Hindenburg Line. Fullwood accompanied Charles Bean to Le Cateau in December 1918, who described in his diary how they ‘camped with a refugee family in a house with several shell holes in it. They let us cook our rations on their fire. Old Fullwood rose to the occasion this day most splendidly – it must have been very trying – I was never through a bitterer day.’

Albert Henry Fullwood was born in Birmingham, England in March 1863. In 1883 he sailed to Australia and began work as a lithographic draughtsman , working on the staff of illustrated journals such as 'Australian Town and Country Journal' and the 'Bulletin'. In 1900 he went to the United States, then to London, as an expatriate artist where he worked as a freelance illustrator, receiving commissions from newspapers and journals, including the London 'Graphic' and designing postcards. From April 1915 until November 1917 Fullwood served with the Royal Army Medical Corps as an orderly at the 3rd London General Hospital at Wandsworth in the company of fellow artists Coates, Roberts and Streeton. He was subsequently appointed an official war artist , attached to the 5th Division AIF, working in France between May and August 1918 and from December 1918 to January 1919. His major contribution as a war artist was to record aspects of the war which others may not have noticed or taken for granted. His works have a narrative element and captured Australian soldiers in 'straightforwardly picturesque views of their environment'. Fullwood returned to Australia in 1920 after his commission had been terminated and became a foundation member of the Australian Painter Etcher's Society in 1920 and the Australian Watercolour Institute in 1924. He died from pneumonia in October 1930.

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