BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page was last updated in July 2006We've left it here for reference.More information

24 April 2014
Accessibility help
Text only
Wars and Conflict Trailbbc.co.uk/history

BBC Homepage

Contact Us

Like this page?
Send it to a friend!

 

'We are Making a New World' by Paul Nash

By Roger Tolson

'We are Making a New World' by Paul Nash
''We are Making a New World' (1918) by Paul Nash, Imperial War Museum ©

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No Man's Land in World War One
Contrast Spencer’s bright vision with this landscape painting by Paul Nash from World War One. Paul Nash was an official war artist in both world wars. His drawings and paintings from World War One contained an explicit and angry anti-war message, and his work in World War Two continued this didactic element but with notable differences.

The rising sun in ‘We are making a New World’ breaks into No Man’s Land on the Western Front. This is a malleable landscape, constantly reshaped and redrawn by bombardment and attacks. Consequently it is un-mappable, people are excluded, it is ownerless, dead and polluted.

In Nash’s bitter vision the sun will continue to rise each and every day to expose the desecration and to repeat judgment on the perpetrators. This new world is unwanted, unlovable but inescapable.

Return to Gallery

Published: 2005-03-15



About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy