A collection of 150 large-scale paintings, drawings, photographs and ship plans that tell the story of naval warfare from the first iron and steam warships to the deadly U-boats and aircraft carriers of the Second World War. It depicts some of the most significant naval engagements including the bombardment of Sveaborg during the Crimean war.
"Fighting Ships 1850-1950" presents a stunning collection of 150 large-scale paintings, drawings, photographs and ship plans that tell the story of naval warfare from the first iron and steam warships to the deadly U-boats and aircraft carriers of the Second World War. Over these More... 100 years, the most significant naval engagements are dramatically depicted in striking detail - the bombardment of Sveaborg during the Crimean war, the battles of Tsushima and Jutland, the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Battle of Midway, the evacuation of Dunkirk and the D-Day landings, as well as the Japanese surrender - revealing the glory and exhilaration of the last great age of marine warfare. Arranged chronologically, the ships illustrated include HMS Warrior, the first iron-hulled, heavily armoured warship; the mighty HMS Dreadnought; the battleship Aurora which ignited the Russian revolution; the Graf Spee, under attack on the River Plate; the formidable German battle cruiser Bismarck; the British aircraft carriers HMS Argus and Illustrious, and the Japanese Akagi, amongst many others.This remarkable collection not only showcases some of the greatest naval artists of the period, including John Wilson Carmichael, Gustave Bourgain, McClelland Barclay, Kobayashi Kiyochika, William Lionel Wyllie, and the official British war artist Richard Eurich, but also features powerful photographs, often taken by the sailors themselves. Each image is accompanied by Sam Willis's expert commentary, shedding light on the key naval conflicts of the era, the breathtaking complexity of the modern warship - as well as life and death on board ship for the ordinary sailor.
Sam Willis was awarded a PhD in Naval History for his thesis on "Command and Tactics in the 18th-century Navy". He has lectured at Bristol University and at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, and has consulted on maritime painting for Christie's and the BBC. Sam spent 18 months as a Square Rig Able Seaman, sailing the tall ships used in the Hornblower television series and Channel 4's award-winning film Shackleton. He is the author of Fighting at Sea in the Eighteenth Century: The Art of Sailing Warfare and Fighting Ships 1750-1850 (Quercus).