1909 - 1998
The Note Home

Oil on board, artist’s handwritten label on verso
Image size: 15 x 11.5 inches (38 x 29.25 cm)

Huntington Museum of Art
Private Collection, West Virginia


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This is a charming oil sketch of a World War I soldier writing a letter home in his barracks. In this scene we get a real understanding of how cramped the living quarters must have been with all of this soldier’s personal items stored close together. Note the towels hanging from the ceiling, his overcoats on the wall behind him, his few personal effects are lined up on a shelf to his left and at his feet lies his empty suitcase, waiting to be packed once again for the long journey home.

The painting has a strong feeling of the ‘Euston Road School’ style of British realism associated with such artists as Graham Bell, Vanessa Bell, William Coldstream, Duncan Grant, Victor Pasmore and Rodrigo Moynihan.


Arthur Stewart Mackay

A painter, graphic and poster artist and a teacher, Arthur Stewart Mackay was born and lived in London and studied at Regent Street Polytechnic School of Art and Hornsey School of Arts and Crafts where he was a bronze medallist. He lectured at Hammersmith College of Art and Building and showed at the Royal Academy, Royal Society of British Artists, the Royal Society of Arts, the Paris Salon, and at the Royal Institute of Oil Painters where he became a member in 1949. The Imperial War Museum holds two of his paintings depicting the Second World War at home.