Wales marks the centenary of World War One

August 4th 2014 marks 100 years since the outbreak of World War One. Millions of soldiers from Wales and the rest of the UK enlisted to fight in the conflict, which lasted for four years between 1914 and 1918.

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First World War prints go on display at National Museum

The End of the War, William Nicholson Credit: National Museum Cardiff

As part of the national commemorations of the centenary of the First World War, the National Museum of Wales is hosting a series of exhibitions to explore the impact the Great War had on life in Wales and the people who lived here.

The programme launched today, with an exhibition of propaganda artwork designed to rally support for the war effort.

The Great War: Britain's Efforts and Ideals was commissioned by the British Government in 1917 - a year before the end of the war on 11 November 1918.

The 'Efforts' portfolio illustrates some of the day-to-day activities of the war effort, while 'Ideals' expresses the aims and ambitions of the war through use of allegory and symbolism.

'The Freedom of the Seas' - Frank Brangwyn Credit: National Museum Wales
C.R.W Nevinson's 'Banking at 4,000 Feet' from the Building Aircraft portfolio Credit: National Museum Wales

As images of propaganda, they purposely avoided showing the horrors and atrocities of war, as was typical of the work of the official war artists.

“As far as I know this is the first time that this series has been displayed in its entirety since 1920. It is a wonderfully diverse group of works, which offers a great insight in to artistic propaganda of the First World War.”

– Beth McIntyre, Amgueddfa Cymru/National Museum of Wales

To mark the opening of the exhibition, the Regimental Band & Corps of Drums of The Royal Welsh will perform on the front steps of the building. This will be followed by free family activities throughout the day including a history re-enactor, art workshops and music.

First World War themed stamps will also be on display and items relating to the War from St Fagans National History Museum.

Monday 4th August will mark exactly 100 years since Britain declared war on Germany.

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