Hugh Lane Exhibition to offer glimpse into First World War

The public will get an opportunity to view a fascinating print project from the First World War at Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane, Parnell Square North, from 24th September.

The new exhibition, ‘Efforts & Ideals: Prints of The First World War’ features 66 works from 18 artists created in the latter years of the seismic conflict. The works were donated to the gallery in 1917 and depict scenes from the battle and domestic fronts. The works were commissioned by the British Government in 1917 to bolster public support for the war in the face of horrific loss of life and have never been exhibited in Ireland until now. ‘Efforts & Ideals follows the success of last year’s ‘Dublin Divided’ which marked the centenary of the Dublin Lockout and admission is free.

Dr. Margarita Cappock of Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane curated the exhibition which runs until 22nd February 2015. She says “Interest in The First World War and in the memorable events of a century ago is growing all the time. The exhibition is a fascinating opportunity to see how artists of the time attempted to understand the conflict as it was still evolving. As they were created to increase public support for the war they also illustrate how art was itself another battleground in the War. ”
A selection of the images can be viewed on Dublin City Council’s Facebook page. See . Dr. Cappock will lead a free guided tour of the exhibition on Sunday 28th September at 2pm.

The exhibition opens in conjunction with the Dublin Festival of History which runs from 26th September to 8th October. It is part of Dublin City Council’s official commemoration of the outbreak of The First World War.

Brendan Teeling of Dublin City Council’s Public Library Service says “One of the objectives of the Dublin Festival of History is to commemorate historical landmarks and this year we will mark Dublin’s involvement in the First World War. We are very pleased to include ‘Efforts & Ideals’ in our programme as it will further broaden the festival’s growing appeal. The exhibition raises fascinating historical questions about public perceptions and understanding of the First World War.”


Notes to the Editor

Dublin Festival of History 26th September to 8th October
Dublin’s involvement in the First World War will be one of the main themes of this year’s Dublin Festival of History. It takes place at Dublin Castle Printworks and venues around the city from 26th September to 8th October, featuring a fantastic line up of Irish and international historians. The Dublin Festival of History, now in its second year, gives everyone with an interest in history the chance to discuss historical events with professional historians.
All lectures are free and booking is available now on

Efforts & Ideals: Prints of the First World War, 24 September 2014 – 22 February 2015
This exhibition brings together the full set of lithographs for the first time on public display in Dublin since they were presented to the gallery almost a century ago, and is supported by a series of free tours and events. By 1917, after three years of hard fighting in the First World War, unprecedented loss of life and increasing hardship at home, the British government looked for ways of developing public support for the War and generating financial support. This exhibition presents the 66 lithographs from a print portfolio that was commissioned by Wellington House, a government department secretly set up to produce propaganda in 1917. It was the most ambitious print project of the First World War.
Eighteen artists contributed to the series, including some of the most celebrated artists of the time. They were published in an edition of 200 by the Fine Art Society and printed under the direction of Ernest Jackson, himself a contributor to the Ideals series. The prints were to be displayed in galleries around Britain and abroad - in France, America and Canada and sold to raise funds for the war effort. Despite good press coverage, the print sales did not meet expectations and the government made a loss on the project as a whole. These prints offer a fascinating overview of many war activities, including the vital role that many women played. By showing this work together as a group once again, this exhibition reassesses their significance as images of First World War propaganda and with the passage of time, allows a new audience to view the entire suite of images.
Artists include Francis Ernest Jackson, Edmond Dulac, Maurice Greiffenhagen, William Nicholson, Eric Kennington, and Christopher Nevinson.