Saturday, February 25, 2012

BALACLAVA in the Arts

When I first embarked on this latest blogging adventure, as stated in my rationale at the start I intended this site to evolve into as valuable a resource as I could make it to assist both myself and fellow enthusiasts in wargaming the battle of Balaclava.

As an important part of my research, I have begun collecting and notating important artists including the great military painters, sketch artists caricaturists and correspondents of the era and beyond who have covered this subject. Being a visual hobby, the visual arts are also an invaluable technical resource as well as serving as a colourful inspiration as the hobbyist similarly tries to recreate past military actions.

Whilst being aware of how popular the subject of Balaclava and the Light Brigade actions were, I had nevertheless failed to realise just how well represented the Crimean War was and still is in the visual arts. Having already listed ten posting on the great artists of the age, I have but scratched at the surface of a mountain of material. I have therefore resolved to limit the scope of my examination for the time being to those artists either alive during the battle or born in the Victorian nineteenth century and thus most influenced and proximate to the event itself.

As an aid to myself as well as any follower of this blog, I therefore tender the following list of artists which fall into this category. This will be a ‘living document’ and will no doubt require amendment and re-posting in the future as the blog and my research expands. It will include painters, illustraters, caricaturists and photographers. Artists ascribed an asterisk (*) I have deemed to fall beyond the remit of this project.

 *Oswald Brierly (1817-1894) – Naval subjects
William Simpson 1823-1899 – watercolours & lithograghs
*Jerry Barrett, 1824-1906 (Crimean War after Balaclava)
Harry Payne
John Charlton
Robert Hillingford
Harry Duprey
Christopher Clark
Richard Caton Woodville
Lady Butler
John Tenniel (Caricaturist and illustrator)
John Leech (Caricaturist and illustrator)
Thomas Jones Barker


  1. A perfectly sound and reasonable rationale. Of course there is the continuing debate of when photography becomes art and if so then Roger Fenton should be included in this list. That said, given the wealth of visual resources available due to his presence you may well be deciding to deal with him separately; a playful post here,

    Which you are more than welcome to use if required.

  2. Been fascinated by this battle for ages , I am in the process of re-basing a 15mm Peter Laing Crimean war army I was lucky enough to visit the battlefield in the early 90's . I will be veiwing your blog with great interest .