Guildhall Somme 100 exhibition to feature Mary Evans Images

Mary Evans Picture Library press release.

Mary Evans Picture Library, the UK’s leading source for historical images, is delighted to be collaborating as exclusive image partner in the forthcoming ‘Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace: Somme 100′ exhibition at the Guildhall Yard, which opens on 1 June and runs until 5 July.

The outdoor exhibition will feature the evocative battlefield photographs of Mike St Maur Sheil, represented exclusively at Mary Evans, with contextual archive imagery from 100 years ago also provided by the library. The exhibition forms part of a programme of events in the City of London to mark the centenary of the Battle of Somme and has been made possible by funding from The Royal British Legion.

It follows Sheils’ hugely successful exhibition of Great War battlefields photographs in St. James’s Park in 2014, also supported by the Legion and featuring archive imagery from Mary Evans. The exhibition attracted an estimated 2.1 million visitors between August and November.

The City of London suffered huge loss of life at the Battle of the Somme, which began on 1 July 1916, and is regarded as one of the bloodiest days in British military history, with 57,470 casualties, of whom 19,240 were killed. Of those, around 3,500 were volunteers who had been workers in the City of London and its immediate surroundings including a range of professions and trades from bankers and stockbrokers to market porters and postmen. The unique location of the exhibition, in Guildhall’s historic courtyard, in the heart of the City, therefore provides a fitting backdrop to Mike St Maur Sheil’s thought-provoking photographs.

Accompanying the exhibition will be a lecture programme focused on the Somme and the year 1916 with guest speakers including Professor Sir Hew Strachan and Professor Gary Sheffield. Luci Gosling of Mary Evans Picture Library will also be speaking on 22 June at St. Lawrence Jewry about the war pictures of the artist, Fortunino Matania, best known for his 1916 painting, ‘Goodbye, Old Man.’

‘Mary Evans is proud to be working closely with Mike St Maur Sheil on this important exhibition,’ says Paul Brown, Managing Director of Mary Evans Picture Library. ‘Our content covering the First World War is rich and diverse and Mike’s collection has provided a moving contemporary counterpoint to Great War images from the time. We’re extremely pleased to be involved in and associated with such a powerful commemorative exhibition.’

‘Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace: Somme 100’ at Guildhall Yard runs from 1 June to 5 July 2016. Admission is free. To see a small selection of images from Mike St. Maur Sheil that will be appearing in the exhibition, click here.

For full details of the exhibition please visit the exhibition website.

For further information, please contact:

Luci Gosling
Mary Evans Picture Library
59 Tranquil Vale
London SE3 0BS, UK
T: +44 (0)20 8318 0034
F: +44 (0)20 8852 7211