100 Years On, Artists Commemorate World War I
See new works devoted to the Great War.
On August 4 1914 Britain declared war on Germany. “The lamps are going out all over Europe,” said foreign secretary Edward Grey, “we shall not see them lit again in our life-time.”
Exactly 100 years later, next Monday will mark a high point in the ongoing World War I centenary celebrations, and artists of all stripes have been invited to join in. Coordinated by 14-18 Now—a program spanning the UK and operating under the umbrella of the Imperial War Museums—numerous new pieces are being presented up and down the country.
Jeremy Deller has released an app showcasing a new film every day from August 1 to August 4; Nalini Malini and Bedwyr Williams have turned to film collages to reflect on the reality of war, past and present; Bob and Roberta Smith worked with communities in Belfast to create a large-scale candle-lit installation spelling out: “What unites human beings, ears, eyes, loves, hopes and toes is huge and wonderful. What divides human beings is small and mean.”
These are only four of a slew of projects, which also include dazzle ships in London and Liverpool by Tobias Rehberger and Carlos Cruz-Diez, artist films by the likes of Claire Cunningham and Tony Heaton, aerial photographs by Anya Gallaccio, and a soldier’s letter reproduced on London underground posters, courtesy of Richard Wentworth.
To commemorate the declaration of war, people are also invited to turn off their lights from 10:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. on Monday, keeping just a single light or a candle to remember the many lives that were lost during the global conflict.
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