The Forgotten Wartime Artist of Blitzed Plymouth
another Steve Johnson "Cyberheritage" web page
a Virtual Gallery, click on image for a larger example
the dead are brought out from a surface air raid shelter that has taken a direct hit: this one prints out very well
a Plymouth city street is on fire having suffered an incendiary bomb raid
St. Andrews Church has been Blitzed as in on fire
Crosses remember the dead of the Plymouth Blitz
sections of a very large oil painting looking up to St Andrews Church from what is today Derry`s Cross at the bottom of Royal Parade, sorry for the reflections
Leicester Harmsworth House, then home to the Western Morning News Ltd. stands along what is now New George Street; a survivor of the aerial attacks, Plymouth rises from the ashes around it. It still survives to this day, although now it is a shopping complex
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Victor Lumas is a little known local artist. Only in Plymouth where heritage takes a back seat could this be the case. In 1995 I was involved in an official exhibition to celebrate VE 50, although Victor Lumas descendants were kind enough to loan many of his originals, it was a familiar case of "no room at the inn" so they did not see the light of day and once again Plymouth people were deprived of their heritage by those who have many degrees and diplomas, little common sense and no feeling for my city`s past. I played among the bomb sites, Plymouth`s history is in my blood, the only thing in their blood is their pension and next pay rise, oh, and a liquid lunch....along with seeking to have their many tea breaks extended.
How can we today imagine this man, sketching, drawing, note taking among the hail of death from unseen but loudly heard enemy aircraft above Plymouth clouds.
To me the two most emotive paintings of those I was priviledged to see were "the dead" and "Plymouth Crosses."
Victor Lumas you are no longer forgotten.
Hopefully as thousands of you all around the world download these images, you will live again and bring the spirit of Blitzed Plymouth alive.
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