US Soldier, Now 94, Reveals The Sketches He Made During The Carnage Of The Second World War
When Victor Alfred Lundy was supposed to be studying to become an architect at the age of 19, he rarely paid attention in the classes because he spent his time sketching. The New York-born student said that he always preferred to sketch than learn, and he had hoped to make this his career, but that it was cut short because of the start of the Second World War. Soon after he enlisted in the Army Special Training Programme, and in 1944 he joined the infantry, where he stayed until he was wounded later that year.
Victor took with him his sketchbook and pencil, to be precise they were 3”x5” pocketbooks, and the pencils were black Hardmuth lead drawing pencils. They became the means for Victor to record hundreds of events that took place while he was serving. He says that he found sketching as easy as thinking, and could draw very fast and accurately.
All of his sketches were done in black, although he did manage to colour a patch of blood with red. The sketches show daily events such as men at rest, or planes flying overhead, such as the one of an air raid over Germany early one morning. From fallen soldiers to his comrades playing games, Victor sketched them all. Some of his sketches capture the brutality of war and are very disturbing to look at. War weary men may be seen at rest, and buildings taken from everyday life fill the books.
We are given a look at a part of life which was not only brutal, but from which many men never returned home. Beautifully documented, they give us a glimpse in that time when life was very cruel. Each man longed to return home, but never could be sure that they would.
The collection of sketches from his notebooks are very clearly and concisely done, with remarkable detail in every picture. Every day life is depicted, sometimes in what would appear as ‘normal’ occasions, such as the picture of a small house with clothes hanging on the line. Other pictures show the desperation and homesickness of men at war.
Victor, now aged 94, is a celebrated architect, having designed such buildings as the US Tax Court, the Sarasota Chamber of Commerce and the US Embassy in Sri Lanka. Victor has donated his eight sketchbooks, which all give us a look at what life was truly like during the Second World War.