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What is War Art?

This is the National Collection of War Art. It is composed of both official pieces of war art, commissioned by the New Zealand government, and other unofficial art works that were acquired by or donated to government departments.

The collection includes portraits, battle scenes, landscapes and abstract works, depicting the men and women who served New Zealand in times of war, and the arenas in which they served.

The collection dates from World War One, when Official War Artists were first appointed to provide a record of New Zealand’s involvement in the conflict. War Artists were again appointed during World War Two, serving in both Europe and the Pacific theatre of operations. The collection also includes works from other military deployments involving New Zealand forces.

The National Collection of War Art has been digitised here to make images representing New Zealanders and their war experiences more widely available.

More about the function of war art »

Please Note:
The images of war depicted in War Art Online may be disturbing.

War Art Exhibition

Visit Archway to search through our entire Archives NZ collection online