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Blue Mountains Tourist : Winter 2009
When the trumpet calls Original posters, handbills and recruiting material done by Norman Lindsay between 1914 and 1918 make up an extraordinary new exhibition this Winter at the gallery that bears his name. E ntitled ‘When the Trumpet Calls – Norman Lindsay and WW1’, the exhibition shows a side of Lindsay’s creative output which often goes unnoticed by visitors to the gallery. Lindsay was the principal cartoonist at ‘The Bulletin’ during the Great War and produced more than 150 full page cartoons. These cartoons were powerful images to encourage enlistment and vilify the enemy. He saw his role as imparting a sense of nationalism and stirring up moral indignation in those he felt were apathetic and even ‘slackers’. There were very mixed feelings amongst Australians about the war. The country had been divided about the conscription debates but swelled with pride over the great courage displayed at Gallipoli and on the Due to the massacres that had occurred at the front, those who had not enlisted were regarded by the ‘patriotic public’ as ‘shirkers’ and great resentment was felt towards them. It was thought that the terrible losses may not have been so great if there had been more volunteers to help our diggers. The original and printed material in the exhibition ‘When the Trumpet Calls’ was created by Lindsay to provoke a powerful response which has not Somme. More than 400,000 enlisted at a time when the population was still less than 5 million. In Lindsay’s war cartoons it was essentially a conflict between ‘good’ and ‘evil’. The enemy was portrayed as grotesque and non human while Australia and the Allies were fighting for the values of civilization. Lindsay’s characters ‘Billjim’ and ‘Sergeant Bill Anzac’ personified Christian values, courage and honour in the struggle against a villain who represented destruction, depravity and death. The number of Australians who were lost was frightening; the death toll would rise to 60,000 by the end of the war. Norman Lindsay’s own brother Reg was killed at the Somme in 1916 and his private attitudes became more complicated and disenchanted, he now viewed the war as reflecting the growing sickness and degeneration of society. diminished over the years. The exhibition is included with normal admission to the Norman Lindsay Gallery and the gallery is open 7 days from 10am to 4pm. A mountain ride Y ou could feel them before you could hear them, a low vibration that grew into an audible rumble. Then they appeared – motorcycles of all makes and sizes, sunlight flashing on chrome as they turned into the slip road. The Ulyssians had arrived. In early Autumn, the Ulysses Motorcycle Club – said to be the biggest in Australia – held its annual get together and expo at Panthers in Penrith. Over that week, the bikers fanned out across the area, with hundreds of them coming to the Blue winter 2009 Mountains to try the roads and catch the scenery. It was when they got off their bikes, took off their helmets and protective jackets that you realised this was a different breed of biker – the youngest over 40 and most of them a decade or so older. With the motto ‘Growing old disgracefully’, club members were out for a good time. It’s too early to gauge how much money they put into the local economy. But they certainly impressed most everyone they met with their friendly manner. www.bluemountainstouristnewspaper.com.au 31