The Weather in Our Souls: Curating a National Collection of Second World War Art at the Imperial War Museum

  • Claire Brenard


The Imperial War Museum (IWM) in London is perhaps most well known for its collections representing the British perspective of the Second World War. Its fine art collection of this period can be understood as consisting of two parts: around 3000 works of “official” war art derived from the Ministry of Information’s wartime collecting scheme and the museum’s own collecting during the 70 years since the war, bringing the total number to nearly 8000 artworks. This chapter explores the ways in which the “official” collection has influenced and shaped the Second World War art collection as a whole, how the collection reflects British national identity at a time of total war and considers the interpretation of the term “war art” in the context of a UK national museum.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Imperial War Museum (IWM)LondonUK

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