Rebecca Coleman Rebecca Coleman Green Man icon Green Man icon

At Dawn the Ridge Emerges

Wood engraving,

This work was completed for the SGFA's Draw 14 exhibition of the theme of Remembrance. I was drawn to images of the trenches, as these seem to encapsulate the horrific and dehumanising conditions suffered by soldiers in the midst of war.

In particular, I wanted to capture the agonising moment just as the men have been poised waiting for orders, then finally receive the command to go over the top. From our vantage point of history, we sadly know that so many of them are about to be gunned down.

Based on a famous photograph taken at the time, I wanted to maximise the darkness of the image, and I also wanted to focus on the characteristic round metal helmets. I incorporated images of explosions on the horizon, as I wanted a backdrop that both contrasted with the dark trenches and also reflected the horror of what lay beyond.

The title of this piece is taken from the opening line of Siegfried Sassoon's 1918 poem, Attack. The full text is available here:
• more art about...war

Limited edition print of 100
Approx image size: 15 cm x 10 cm (6 x 4 inches)