Behind the Lines: Combat Artists and The Citadel Experience
September 15 – December 6, 2023 Winfred B. Moore, Jr., Art Gallery Capers Hall
The inaugural exhibition in Winfred B. Moore, Jr. Art Gallery in Capers Hall, Behind the Lines: Combat Artists and The Citadel Experience features the work of eight acclaimed combat artists hosted as artists-in-residence by The Citadel’s Fine Arts Program. Following a longstanding tradition of American artists chronicling war, many of the exhibiting artists have participated in the Marine Corps Combat Art Program. Founded in 1942 and managed today by the National Museum of the Marine Corps, the program deploys combat artists to training exercises and overseas operations to record and preserve the Marine experience. While photographs and video capture moments in time, combat art has the ability to preserve military life in a different way, distilling a range of experiences and emotions into a single scene.
The artists featured in Behind the Lines are part of a supportive, tight-knit community of combat artists. They have worked together, mentored one another, and share a common goal of expressing humanity through art, even when working in the most difficult of circumstances. At The Citadel, the artists shared their knowledge and experience with cadets while applying their combat art methods to life on campus. The resulting works of art capture The Citadel experience from both a military and human perspective. The paintings and drawings offer a glimpse of everyday life—from drill practice to morning runs to haircuts at the campus barber shop. Together, these seemingly ordinary moments add up to something extraordinary and reveal a Corps of Cadets dedicated to the pursuit of honor, duty, and respect, upholding the core values of The Citadel.
Behind the Lines is curated by Tiffany Reed Silverman, Director of Fine Arts at The Citadel, and made possible by The Citadel School of Humanities and Social Sciences, The Citadel Office of the Provost, and Friends of Fine Arts at The Citadel. Exhibition support provided by Erin Banks of Banks Creative, Pam Wall, Josh Silverman of Charleston Event Pros, Rick Sargent, Kevin Free, Chris Pelletier, and Brittaney Maples Smith. Additional contributions provided by students in the Combat Art, Arts Management, and Gallery Management courses at The Citadel. Special appreciation to each of the combat artists for their dedication to their craft and country, and commitment to educating the next generation of principled leaders.