New exhibition captures war and conflict

By Matthew Bates Thursday 31 January 2013 Updated: 31/01 11:21

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Buy photos » This Peter Kennard image shows Margaret Thatcher in a gas mask. (s)

A MAJOR exhibition into wars and conflict has opened at the Herbert Art Gallery.

Among the pieces in Caught in the Crossfire is an image of Margaret Thatcher in a gas mask and a mocked up image of Tony Blair photographing himself on a mobile phone infront of an explosion into an eight-foot canvas at its entrance.

Last year it was revealed the former Prime Minister's son, Euan, worked at a city centre careers company - just streets away from The Herbert.

Over 300 people attended its launch last Thursday to catch a private viewing of the exhibition before it opened to the public.

The works in the exhibition are drawn mainly from the Herbert’s collection and includes the likes of John Piper, Eric Kennington and Muirhead Bone alongside contemporary pieces by kennardphillipps, Banksy works from a private collection, Peter Howson, Matthew Picton and Cornelia Parker.

Chief executive Ludo Keston said the exhibition demonstrated how artists grapple with the brutality of war and the desire for peace.

"Coventry has an extraordinary history, and it’s a story we try and tell to the hundreds of thousands of visitors who come here every year," he said.

"None perhaps is more important to tell than Coventry’s journey to becoming a city devoted to Peace and Reconciliation.

"As an art gallery as well as a museum, we wanted to bring together this exhibition as a contemporary view from artists giving their responses to the themes of the brutality of war and the desire for peace."

Caught in the Crossfire exhibits in Gallery 1 until July and is free.

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Buy photos» This image, by kennardphillips, features heavily in the new exhibition. (s)

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