Elizabeth THOMPSON <em>The 28th Regiment at Quatre Bras </em>1875 oil on canvas 97.2 x 216.2 cm National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne Purchased, 1884 p.309.9-1

Elizabeth Thompson: A Humanist Perspective on War

A nineteenth century cultural celebrity, Elizabeth Thompson was one of Britain’s most renowned artists and excelled in the traditionally masculine genre of military painting. Her painting The 28th Regiment at Quatre Bras from 1875 depicts the chaos and horrific events of the 1815 Battle of Quatre Bras, which took place two days before the famous Battle of Waterloo.

What artistic decisions did Elizabeth Thompson make when creating this large and powerful work? How was it received by audiences and the art establishment? And what has been revealed through Conservation research and treatment of the work?


Dr Ted Gott, Senior Curator, International Art, NGV
Michael Varcoe-Cocks, Head of Conservation, NGV
Dr Maria Quirk, Assistant Curator, Collections and Research, NGV