“I want to be a Russian soldier!” Children’s drawings of the First World War from the collection of the State Historical Museum
10 Sep., 2014 — 10 Oct., 2014

The exhibition is dedicated to the centenary of the First World War (1914-1918). It presents more than 200 children’s drawings of wartime acquired by the Historical Museum in 1919 from the famous scholar and collector V.S. Voronov (1887-1940).

The exhibition is divided into two large sections.

In the first room there are drawings that show hospitals and medical cars, the wounded in the streets and in the hospitals, sisters of Mercy, captured Germans and Austrians, gifts to soldiers, flags of the belligerent powers. All drawings are made ​​from nature. In this room you will see also an officer’s uniform of the Guards which belonged to cesarevitch Alexei Nikolaevich, photos of cesarevitch, and photos of pupils of high school who can be the authors of the drawings.

The second room is dedicated to the events that took place directly in the theaters of war. There are pictures of battles on land, at sea and in the air. Of particular interest are images of the new types of military equipment that appeared during the war: armoured cars, battleships, submarines, airplanes, dirigibles. There are also drawings representing Russian, German and other foreign soldiers.
The exhibition of the second room is completed with items that “inspired” children to draw: wooden soldiers made by the Sergiev Posad craftsmen and folk clay toys dated to the late 19th and early 20th century, tin toys of P. Talaev’s factory dated to1910s, magazines of war time, children’s books about the war. There are also sheets from a series of “Today’s lubok” fulfilled after the drawings by K. Malevich and A. Lentulov accompanied with poetic texts written by V. Mayakovsky. The sheets have many parallels with children’s art work regarding war.

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