E. J. Hughes: Canadian War Artist

By (author): Robert Amos
ISBN 9781771513852
Hardcover | Publication Date: October 4, 2022
Book Dimensions: 10 in. x 9 in.
216 Pages

About the Book

“A penetrating study based on unique archival material and a deep analysis into hundreds of wartime works of art.” —Tim Cook, author of The Fight for History: 75 Years of Forgetting, Remembering, and Remaking of Canada’s Second World War

The third volume of this award-winning series showcases paintings and drawings E. J. Hughes created during the artist’s war service in Ottawa, England, Wales, and Alaska.

In this, the third volume of an award-winning series on artist E. J. Hughes (1913–2007), Robert Amos turns his focus to Hughes’s service in the Second World War.

The narrative begins with Hughes’s cadet days with the Seaforth Highlanders in Vancouver, followed by his enlistment at the Work Point Barracks in Esquimalt in 1939. Named the first “service artist” in 1941, he spent two winters in Ottawa before being posted to London where he was attached to different regiments in England and Wales. His paintings of camp life and convoys reflect his keen attention to the details of vehicles, artillery, and uniforms. In 1943 on the Alaskan island of Kiska, he transformed sub-zero weather and howling gales into a powerful document of this remote theatre of war. He returned to Ottawa where he worked until 1946—Canada’s first, last, and longest-serving War Artist of the Second World War. He was also the most prolific.

The book features seventy artworks from the Canadian War Museum’s holdings, expanded with many personal photos and sketches from the artist’s papers. The narrative situates Hughes’s wartime work within the broader context of his life and his development as an artist. With the care and knowledge of a fellow artist, Amos draws the reader into this important chapter in the life of E. J. Hughes and Canadian art.

About the Author(s)

Robert Amos has published eleven books on art—including three bestselling volumes on the life and work of beloved Canadian artist E. J. Hughes—and was the arts columnist for Victoria’s Times Colonist newspaper for more than thirty years. Amos was elected to the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts in 1995 and is an Honorary Citizen of Victoria. He lives in Oak Bay, British Columbia, with his wife, artist Sarah Amos.