Russian Guards, the National Gallery and the End of The Great War

Today’s Seven magazine with The Sunday Telegraph had a photograph from Andy Freeberg’s “Guardians” series. It is part of a show at Somerset House which explores the legacy of Henri Cartier Bresson. It shows one of the female guards in a Russian art museum, which, according to the caption under the photograph, “had to be retired professionals – dentists, economists, bankers – and to demonstrate sufficient knowledge and pride in Russia and its culture.” This made me look at my shot of a guard at the Hermitage in St Petersburg in a new light!

These two ladies were at the Church of Our Saviour on the Spilled Blood, also in St Petersburg.

Also in Seven was a review by Andrew Graham-Dixon of “Seduced by Art”, an exhibition of photographs at the National Gallery in London. He wasn’t impressed and only gave it two stars. I’ll be taking a look when I’m in London in a few days. I’m going down with the Management to see “Bronze” at the Royal Academy, but want to see “Seduced by Art” and “Richard Hamilton: The Late Works”. I’ll let you know what I think. Unfortunately, we won’t be able to see the Mughal India exhibition at the British Library as it doesn’t open until two days after we return home.

In the main part of the Telegraph was a confusing article entitled “Great War history turns to mystery” which was basically about people’s ignorance about the First World War, especially young people’s. I say ‘confusing’ because the graphic has various pie-charts including one headed “What year did the First World War end?” It showed that 56% said 1918, 31% didn’t know and 13% said other years. I’m afraid it doesn’t say how many of this latter 13% gave the correct answer which is, of course, 1919. The armistice was in November 1918, but the war only ended with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles in June 1919.

I think the fault probably lies with the subeditor who wrote the caption for the pie-chart as the text of the article itself says ” … while just 40% [of 16 to 24 year olds] correctly stated that peace was reached in 1918″ which is a correct statement as it refers to the armistice.


About notes to the milkman

I'm a printmaker based in the North West of England, living in Bolton and printing at Hot Bed Press in Salford. Please visit my website
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