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Exhibition Theme - Casualtie

A child bomb-victim receiving penicillin treatment

Ethel Gabain (1903-1942)
A child bomb-victim receiving penicillin treatment, Ethel Gabain, Imperial War Museum, ART LD 5775

Gabain's image of the child being treated with penicillin shows her isolated, amid weights and levers and drips that balance and sustain her. However, the overall impression here is of someone safe, protected and, as she engages the viewer, hopeful. Penicillin saved her leg from amputation. This was one of a series of paintings commissioned to display scientific developments. Gabain had lost a child during the war and was herself in poor health when she undertook the commission.

Oil on canvas 76.2 x 63.5 cm
Painted in London, 1944
Imperial War Museum ART LD 5775

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