Canadian War Museum Portrait Wall to showcase sculptures of ordinary Canadians from the First World War

July 31, 2014

Ottawa, Ontario, July 31, 2014 — The Canadian War Museum’s new exhibition, Ordinary People in Extraordinary Times, features 12 sculptures of Canadians who served at home and abroad during the First World War. These works of art — several of which have not been exhibited since the end of the war almost 96 years ago — are drawn from the Museum’s Beaverbrook Collection of War Art, which includes more than 13,000 paintings, drawings, prints and sculptures.

“By depicting a wide range of people involved in the war effort, from female factory workers to front-line soldiers, these sculptures put a human face on war. They show ordinary people working hard for the war effort at home, alongside those who served in battle with distinction,” said James Whitham, Director General of the Canadian War Museum. “One hundred years after the beginning of the First World War, these works of art still speak to the social impact of this cataclysmic conflict.”

The exhibition includes nine bronze figures by Florence Wyle and Frances Loring, who were commissioned to depict the work of Canadian workers on the home front. Wyle’s Munitions Worker and Noon Hour and Loring’s The Shell Finisher, The Rod Turner and The Furnace Girl pay tribute to the women who took on dangerous tasks in munitions factories. Wyle’s Farm Girl and On the Land recognize those who planted and harvested crops and cared for livestock. Her works The Blacksmith and A Moulder depict male labourers on the home front

Ordinary People in Extraordinary Times also features portraits of soldiers, including Lionel Fosbery’s very young Drummer Boy. Francis Derwent Wood sculpted the heads of Private William Douglas, wounded at the Second Battle of Ypres in 1915, and Captain Herbert D’Olier Kingstone, M.C., who was decorated for his gallantry at the Battle of Courcelette, France, in 1916.

Ordinary People in Extraordinary Times is graciously supported by the Friends of the Canadian War Museum (FCWM) and long-time War Museum supporters and advocates, Michael and Anne Gough of Toronto. It is among the many exhibitions, events and activities organized by the War Museum to commemorate the centenary of the First World War. For more information, please visit

The Canadian War Museum is Canada’s national museum of military history. Its mission is to promote public understanding of Canada’s military history in its personal, national, and international dimensions.


Media contacts:

Yasmine Mingay
Manager, Public Affairs
Canadian War Museum
Telephone: 819-776-8608
Avra Gibbs Lamey
Senior Communications   and Media Relations Officer, Canadian War Museum
Telephone:   819-776-8607

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