Monday, June 15, 2015

James Thiriar

[Belgium] (b 1889/d 1965)

James Thiriar was a Belgian artist from Brussels. He fought as member of the 'Garde Civique' (civil guard) and was wounded during the early days of the war. He later escaped to London and joined the regular Belgian army. The Illustrated London News and other periodicals published his drawings. A series of his watercolors depicting life on the Yser and behind the front lines was used as heading for writing paper that was sold to raise money for wounded Belgian soldiers and convalescent homes. Like most Belgian war-time artists, he was not particularly interested in depicting military scenes involving battle or combat. Instead he preferred to illustrate the everyday life of soldiers behind the front lines and like many artists at the time, he was fascinated by the enormous destruction caused by the war and by scenes of ruins and embattled landscapes and destroyed villages. Then again he was a very proficient illustrator of military uniforms and of 'types' of soldiers, as can be seen in many of his line drawings. 
During his wartime service, he was at first attached to the army topographical services where he made detailed maps and drawings of the front lines. In 1916 he was transferred to the 'Section Artistique' of the Belgian army where he organised several expositions of war art in De Panne Belgium and in London. He also produced illustrations for a Belgian soldier's magazine called 'De Ijzer' (Flemish name for the river Yser). In 1917, he illustrated a book called 'Les Vainqueurs de l'Yser'. After the war he published his own book of memoires and illustrations entitled 'Gloire et Misere au Front de Flandres 1914 - 1918' as well as illustrating other books such as 'Robert Vivier et James Thiriar Raconte la Guerre'. 


Belgium 1934 "Anti Tuberculosis Fund" (7,1) [Recess (Malines)] Sc(B156,...,B162)

Belgium 1962 "Stamp Day" (1) [Engr (Jean De Bast)][Recess] Sc(578)

Belgium 1964 "Stamp Day" (1) [Engr (Jean De Bast)][Recess] Sc(609)

Belgium 1965 "Stamp Day" (1) [Engr (Jean De Bast)][Recess] Sc(629)

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