“The phrase “dogs of war” evokes the unleashing of fury and violence, but dog-loving Melbourne artist Peter Wegner has won the Gallipoli art prize by depicting the softer side of canines in combat.
“His ‘confronting’ oil painting shows a dog wearing a gas mask. It’s a homage to the many roles dogs have played in conflicts from World War I, when mustard gas was first used, right through to Afghanistan – as messengers, sentinels, mascots, in searching for wounded soldiers and just as importantly as morale boosters…” (www.theaustralian.com.au, April 23, 2013).
Photo by James Croucher (News Limited).
This attractive painting from Australian artist Peter Wegner received a lot of press Down Under. The prize was awarded by the Gallipoli Memorial Club (www.gallipoli.com.au), an organization formed in 1915 by veterans of World War I. The Gallipoli Art Prize Competition was founded in 2006 and will be conducted annually up to and including the Centenary Year 2015. This year’s prize (2013) is especially interesting for its depiction of a war dog wearing a gas mask, a familiar site on some battlefields.