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With an entire museum dedicated to the study and exhibition of war art and artifacts in Canada, as well as other institutions approaching the subject from varying points of view, there is a wealth of opportunity to access materials and scholarship relating to military art. Officially commissioned projects and propaganda, objects and ephemera from popular culture, and creative responses made by individuals on the front lines form a body of work that spans generations.


Walter S. Allward’s plaster statues for the Canadian National Vimy Memorial (gallery view), 1921–36, Canadian War Museum, Ottawa.
Raymond Moriyama, Canadian War Museum, 2005, concrete, reinforced steel, 440,000 square metres, Ottawa.



Further Reading

Adell, Jacqueline. “British First World War Art and the Group of Seven.” M.A. research essay, Carleton University, 1984.


Baird, Shirley May. “The stained glass war memorial windows of Charles William Kelsey.” M.A. thesis, Concordia University, 1995.


Cover of CHIMO: Collier’s Canadian Forces Artists Program Story, 2011, by David Collier.

Bennett, Lloyd. The 1919 Canadian War Memorials Exhibition, Burlington House, London: A Contextual Study. New York: Linus Publications, 2015.


Brownstone, Arni. War Paintings of the Tsuu T’ina [Sarcee] Nation. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2015.


Burant, Jim. “The Military Artist and the Documentary Art Record.” Archivaria 26 (January 1988): 33–51.


Butler, Geoff. Art of War: Painting It Out of the Picture. Granville Ferry, NS, c.1990.


Butlin, Susan. “Landscape as Memorial: A.Y. Jackson and the Landscape of the Western Front, 1917–1918.” Canadian Military History 5, no. 2 (1996): 62–70.


———. “Women Making Shells: Marking Women’s Presence in Munitions Work, 1914–1918, the Art of Frances Loring, Florence Wyle, Mabel May, and Dorothy Stevens.” Canadian Military History 5, no. 1 (1996): 41–48.


Cameron, Elspeth. And Beauty Answers: The Life of Frances Loring and Florence Wyle. Toronto: Cormorant Books, 2008.


Collier, David. CHIMO. Wolfville: Conundrum Press, 2011.


Comfort, Charles. Artist at War. Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1956.


Conley, Christine. “Material, Trace, Trauma: Notes on Some Recent Acquisitions at the Canadian War Museum and the Legacy of the First World War.” Canadian Military History 26, no. 1 (2017): 1–19.


Conley, Christine and Kirsty Robertson. Terms of Engagement: Averns, feldman-kiss, Stimson. Kingston: Agnes Etherington Art Centre; Halifax: Mount Saint Vincent University Art Gallery; Calgary: Esker Foundation, 2014. Exhibition catalogue.


Cooke, Owen, and Peter Robertson. “James Peters, Military Photography and the Northwest Campaign, 1885.” Canadian Military History 9, no. 1 (2000): 23–29.


Cover of Blackfoot War Art: Pictographs of the Reservation Period, 1880–2000, c.2007, by L. James Dempsey.
Cover of I Can Only Paint: The Story of Battlefield Artist Mary Riter Hamilton, 2020, by Irene Gammel.

Dempsey, L. James. Blackfoot War Art: Pictographs of the Reservation Period, 1880–2000. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, c.2007.


Doll, Maurice F.V. The Poster War: Allied Propaganda Art of the First World War. Edmonton: Alberta Community Development, 1993. Exhibition catalogue.


Fairley, Herbert, and John Swettenham. Silent Witness. Ottawa: Canadian War Museum and Department of Veterans Affairs, 1974.


Foss, Brian. “‘No Dead Wood’: Henry Lamb and the Canadians.” Canadian Military History 6, no. 2 (1997): 62–66.


Gammel, Irene. I Can Only Paint: The Story of Battlefield Artist Mary Riter Hamilton. Montreal & Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2020.


Gossage, Carolyn, ed. Double Duty: Sketches and Diaries of Molly Lamb Bobak, Canadian War Artist. Toronto: Dundurn Press, 1992.


Greenfield, Nathan. Anything but a Still Life: The Art and Lives of Molly Lamb and Bruno Bobak. Fredericton: Goose Lane, 2021.


Hayes, Derek. Historical Atlas of Canada: Canada’s History Illustrated. Toronto: Douglas & McIntyre, 2006.


Hucker, Jacqueline, and Julian Smith. Vimy: Canada’s Memorial to a Generation. Ottawa: Sanderling Press, 2012.


Huneault, Kristina. “Heroes of a Different Sort: Representations of Women at Work in Canadian Art of the First World War.” M.A. thesis, Concordia University, 1994.


Jackson, A.Y. A Painter’s Country: The Autobiography of A.Y. Jackson. Toronto: Clarke, Irwin & Company, 1958.


Kelly, Gemey. Arthur Lismer, Nova Scotia 1916–1919. Halifax: Dalhousie Art Gallery, 1992. Exhibition catalogue.


Cover of Reading the Wampum: Essays on Hodinöhsö:ni’ [Haudenosaunee] Visual Code and Epistemological Recovery, 2014, by Penelope Myrtle Kelsey.

Kelsey, Penelope Myrtle. Reading the Wampum: Essays on Hodinöhsö:ni’ [Haudenosaunee] Visual Code and Epistemological Recovery. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2014.


Keshen, Jeff. Propaganda and Censorship during Canada’s Great War. Edmonton: University of Alberta Press, 1996.


Keyser, James. Art of the Warriors: Rock Art of the American Plains. Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2004.


Klempan, Barbara. “Paintbox at Sea: The Materials and Techniques of Canadian Second World War Artist C. Anthony Law.” Material History Review 61, no. 1 (spring 2005): 62–68.


Klotz, Sarah. “Shooting the War: The Canadian Army Film Unit in the Second World War.” Canadian Military History 14, no. 3 (2005): 21–38.


Konody, P.G. “On War Memorials.” In Art and War: Canadian War Memorials. London: Colour, 1919, 5–16.


Larocque, Peter. “The Peripatetic Journey of Miller Brittain’s ‘The Place of Healing’ in the Transformation from War to Peace.” Acadiensis 43 (2014): 117–26.


Larocque, Yves M. “La peinture militaire canadienne de la Deuxième Guerre Mondiale et son aspect surréal.” M.A. thesis, Université de Montréal, 1985.


Lerner, Loren. Afterimage: Evocations of the Holocaust in Contemporary Canadian Arts and Literature. Montreal: Concordia University Institute for Canadian Jewish Studies, 2002.


MacLeod, Pegi Nicol. “Recording the Women’s Services.” Canadian Art 2, no. 2 (December 1944–January 1945): 48–51.


Mantle, Craig Leslie. “A Symbolic Return of Communitas: William MacDonnell’s Modernizing Mostar.” Canadian Military History 24, no. 1 (2015): 381–92.


Marcus, Angela. “Soldiers’ Lives Depicted: Paintings and Drawings by ‘Unofficial Artists’ in the Collection of the Canadian War Museum.” Canadian Military History 7, no. 1 (1998): 51–58.


McIntosh, Terresa. “Other Images of War: Canadian Women War Artists of the First and Second World Wars.” M.A. thesis, Carleton University, 1990.


McNairn, Alan. Behold the Hero: General Wolfe and the Arts in the Eighteenth Century. Montreal & Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 1997.


Metson, Graham, and Cheryl Lean, eds. Alex Colville: Diary of a War Artist. Halifax: Nimbus Publishing, 1981.


Morris, Jerrold. Canadian Artists and Airmen, 1940–45. Toronto: The Morris Gallery, 1969.


Murray, Joan. Canadian Artists of the Second World War. Oshawa: Robert McLaughlin Gallery, 1981. Exhibition catalogue.


Cover of The Bomb in the Wilderness: Photography and the Nuclear Era in Canada, 2020, by John O’Brian.
Cover of Art for War and Peace, 2015, by Ian Sigvaldason and Scott Steedman.

O’Brian, John. The Bomb in the Wilderness: Photography and the Nuclear Era in Canada. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2020.


Osborne, Brian S. “Warscapes, Landscapes, Inscapes: France, War, and Canadian National Identity.” In Iain S. Black and Robin A. Butlin, eds., Place, Culture and Identity: Essays in Historical Geography in Honour of Alan R.H. Baker. Québec: Les Presses de l’Université Laval, 2001, 311–33.


Robertson, Heather. A Terrible Beauty: The Art of Canada at War. Toronto: James Lorimer, 1977.


Robertson, Kirsty M. “We Stand on Guard for Thee: Protecting Myths of Nation in ‘Canvas of War.’” M.A. thesis, Queen’s University, 2001.


Robertson, Peter. “Canadian Photojournalism during the First World War.” History of Photography 2, no. 1 (1978): 37–52.


Robertson, Peter. Relentless Verity: Canadian Military Photographers since 1885. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1974.


Sigvaldason, Ian, and Scott Steedman. Art for War and Peace. Vancouver: Red Leaf, 2015.


Smith, Heather. Keepsakes of Conflict: Trench Art and Other Canadian War-related Craft. Moose Jaw: Moose Jaw Museum & Art Gallery, 2017. Exhibition catalogue.


St-Denis, Guy. The True Face of Sir Isaac Brock. Calgary: University of Calgary Press, 2018.


Thomas, Ann, Bodo Von Dewitz, and Anthony Petiteau. The Great War: The Persuasive Power of Photography. Ottawa: National Gallery of Canada, 2014. Exhibition catalogue.


Tippett, Maria. Art at the Service of War: Canada, Art, and the Great War. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1984 and 2013.


———. Sculpture in Canada: A History. Toronto: Douglas and McIntyre, 2018.


Valverde, Fiona. “The Canadian War Artists’ Programme [sic], 1942–1946.” M. Litt. thesis, Cambridge University, 1997.



Selected Websites publishes articles offering new perspectives on Canadian history including war art.


Cover of the catalogue for Terms of Engagement: Averns, feldman-kiss, Stimson, 2014, by Christine Conley and Kirsty Robertson. This exhibition featured works by Dick Averns, nichola feldman-kiss, and Adrian Stimson, all of whom participated in the Canadian Forces Artists Program. is the gateway to the extensive war art, photographic, poster, and archival holdings of Library and Archives Canada. is the Department of National Defence’s war art site. introduces you to the artists who have participated in the Canadian Forces Artists Program. In conjunction with the Diefenbunker Museum and the Canadian War Museum, participating artists have been the subject of exhibitions and accompanying catalogues (Groups 6–8). has published a significant number of articles on war art. provides links to the war art in the National Gallery of Canada, which includes a number of the larger canvases from the Canadian War Memorials Fund plus a war photograph collection, important archives, and other useful databases such as its exhibition history. is the gateway to the extensive Indigenous collections of the Canadian Museum of History, which includes online exhibitions. provides access to the collections of the Imperial War Museum, London, which include a surprising number of Canadian artworks, photographs, and archival materials. lists the extensive publications by the author of this book. provides an extensive online archive of illustrated short articles on war art going back twenty years.


Anonymous, Why Aren’t You in Uniform?, c.1941–45, ink on paper, 25.5 x 35.4 cm, Canadian War Museum, Ottawa. Numerous works can be viewed online through the Canadian War Museum collections database. is the gateway to the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, which includes a number of war works by Group of Seven members. hosts a number of films and videos about war and Canada. is a useful resource for images and information on early Canadian and Indigenous war art. provides digital versions of a significant number of articles and reviews about Canadian war art and artists. provides useful bibliographic material on specific artists and wartime media in a Canadian context. hosts The Founders’ Gallery at The Military Museums. Detailed listings of all the art exhibitions curated or displayed there over the past decade and more are available. is a database listing thousands of Canadian war memorials. provides access to images of the art created in the four Canadian official war art programs plus war artist photographs, archives, exhibitions, articles and interviews, and books on war art. Its military poster and decorative art holdings are also extensive.


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