Ecrivains et artistes face à la Grande Guerre
Claude Pommereau, Claire Maingon, Guillaume Picon
’I hate the XXth century as I hate rotten Europe’: writer Georges Duhamel wrote in 1917 in Civilisation, when he was a surgeon on the line of combat. As for Fernand Léger, then a porter, when a friend asked him if he would remain a Cubist after the conflict, he said with strenght: ’There is no greater Cubism than a war such as this one that divides a man more or less properly in various pieces and sends them to the four corners of the eartht.’ As is shown in this well illustrated work, presented as a chronological diary of the four years of hell, artists, writers and musicians also suffered during this conflict. While some managed to hide, such as Duchamp, Raimu or Delaunay, refugied in Spain, many paid a high price, the dead above all - Boccioni, Franz Marc, Gaudier-Brzeska, Louis Pergaud -; but also the seriously wounded such as Apollinaire, Braque or Jean Renoir. Even when one is far from the shots of fire, one can die from them. Animal sculptor Rembrandt Bugatti, depressed and sick, committed suicide when he learned the lions from the zoo of Antwerp had become dangerous from hunger and had to be shot.
Review published in the newsletter #350 - from 12 June 2014 to 18 June 2014