Tag Archives: World War II

“Spirit of 1940” Newspaper Ads / Campaign by Yesterday, UKTV

9月7日から今日までの3日間、新聞に掲載された広告。第二次世界大戦がイギリスで本格化、ザ・ブリッツThe Blitz)が始まり、多くの人々が疎開、食料も配給制になった1940年から70年の節目を迎えたことを記念し、デジタルケーブル・衛星局のUKTVの歴史専門チャンネル「Yesterday」が今週放映している「Spirit of 1940」特集番組の広告で、レトロな色使いとデザインがなかなかいい。

These are the newspaper ads / campaign published  for three days, started on September 7. These nice retro design ads are of “Spirit of 1940”,  a series of programs shown this week on history channel “Yesterday“, a part of a digital cable and satellite television network UKTV, commemorating the 70th anniversary of the year 1940, in which Britain experienced the Blitz, saw the start of food rationing and sent evacuees away from their homes.

The Blitzザ・ブリッツ)70周年を記念し、先日9月7日、セント・ポール寺院で式典が行われた(関連記事)。ザ・ブリッツとは、第二次世界大戦中の1940年9月7日から1941年5月10日まで、ナチス・ドイツがイギリスに対して行った大規模な空襲。ドイツ語で稲光を意味する blitzが、イギリス・メディアによって、この一連の空襲を表すのに用いられた。57日間に及ぶロンドン夜間空襲から始まり、産業施設や民間施設をターゲットにしたザ・ブリッツは、イギリスの多くの都市や町に被害を与え、43,000名以上の死者(うち半数がロンドン市民)を出し、約140万人が家を失った(フォトギャラリー)。

On September 7th, a service at St Paul’s Cathedral marked the 70th anniversary of the start of the Blitz (related article). The Blitz, the German word for “lightning” applied by the British press, was the sustained heavy and frequent bombing raids carried out over Britain by Nazi Germany between 6 September 1940 and 10 May 1941, during the Second World War. It began with the bombing of London for 57 consecutive nights, and hit many towns and cities across the country, targeting both industrial facilities and civilian centers. Over 43,000 civilians (half of them in London) had been killed during the period, and 1.4 million people became homeless in London alone (photo gallery).

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Henry Moore Exhibition @ Tate Britain




A new exhibition of the work of Henry Moore (1898–1986), one of Britain’s greatest sculptors and artists, just opens at Tate Britain today. The exhibition, the first major London retrospective of his work since his death in 1986, presents more than 150 stone sculptures, wood carvings, bronzes and drawings in his early career, including his main themes of the mother and child, reclining woman, seated figure and head, as well as his shelter drawings of Londoners sleeping in bomb shelters during the Blitz, as an Official War Artist. Although Moore liked his works to be in outdoor public spaces, recently more of his works are exhibited indoor due to vandalism and theft, according to the BBC news yesterday.

Moore rebelled against views of sculpture, instead finding inspiration from non-Western works he saw in museums. He pioneered carving directly from materials, evolving his signature abstract forms derived from the human body, with the influence of Modernism and Surrealism. His organic forms are generally pierced or contain hollow spaces. He was best known for his large scale abstract monumental bronze and marble sculptures which are located around London as well as the world as public art.

The exhibition is impressive and well-done. Though Moore’s works are smaller than his outdoor works, his unique style, primitive yet modern and simple, is certainly seen. His works have some sort of warmth and strength, and I felt calm and relaxed by looking at them. On the other hand, his drawings of people without faces and looking like mummies during German air raids, are painful to look at and vividly shows us the hardship that people went through during the World War II.

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Robert Kusmirowski: Bunker @ Curve Art, Barbican Centre

バービカン・センターのCurve Artで開催中の、ポーランド人アーティスト・Robert Kusmirowskiの作品「Bunker(塹壕)」(9月30日〜1月10日、入場無料)を観た。1973年生まれのKusmirowskiは、戦争体験者ではないが、世界大戦や冷戦等、「過去」にこだわった作品を作り続けており、Bunkerは使われなくなった、第二次世界大戦中の塹壕を再現した作品。「Curve」という名の通り、ギャラリー全体がゆるやかにカーブしていて、先に何があるか見えないので、何が待ち構えているか分からないスリルを感じる。薄明かりの中、腐食した水道管やボイラー、錆びた発電機や古い機械類、古びた缶や食料、そしてサバイバルのための道具等の中を歩いていく。使われなくなった線路がギャラリー端から端まで貫いており、寝室やトイレ、交信室や事務室なども妙にリアルだ。年代が経っているような効果を出すため、彼の膨大なコレクションからの古い品物に加え、ゴミ捨て場や解体場等で見つけたオブジェを使用。塹壕を見学したり、写真書類等を調べて、細部にまでこだわって再現したそうだ。この空間にいると、タイムスリップし、戦時中の落ち着かない、常に死と隣り合わせの恐怖を感じ、不安になる。良くできた作品だけれど、長くいると気分が滅入る。

We went to see “Bunker” by Polish artist Robert Kusmirowski at Curve Art in Barbican Centre (Sep 30 to Jan 10, entrance free).  Bunker is an recreation of a disused WWII era bunker. Although Kusmirowski was born in 1973 and had never experienced World War II, he obsesses with the ‘past’ and have created installations based on WWII and the following cold war. As its name suggests,  Curve Art gallery doesn’t have any straight line, and I was thrilled as I couldn’t see what was waiting ahead. In dim light, we walked through corroded pipes and boilers, rusted generators, electrical gauges and other obsolete machines as well as old cans and survival supplies. Abandoned rail track runs through entire gallery, and bedroom and toilet, communication room look very real. In order to create decay and aging effects, Kusmirowski has used found objects from his own large collection, as well as items collected from junkyards and demolition sites. He visited existed bunkers and studied documents and photography to ensure that smallest details are realistic. In the gallery, I felt as if I had been transported through time to WWII period when people were constantly facing fear of death, and it made me nervous. Bunker is well-done artwork, but it is quite creepy.

Bunkerは、200以上のイベントを企画し、ポーランドの文化をイギリスに紹介する、「POLSKA! YEAR」の一環のアート作品。「POLSKA(ポルスカ)」は、ポーランドの国名で、野原を意味するそうだ。POLSKA! YEARは、2009年春から始まって、2010年まで続く。このブログを書くにあたって、初めてこのイベントの存在を知った。そう言えば、テート・モダンで開催中の「How It Is」も、ポーランド人アーティスト・ミロスワフ・バウカの作品だった。


Bunker is a part of POLSKA! YEAR in the UK, which comprises over 200 projects presenting the most interesting achievements of Polish culture to British public. ‘Polska’ is Poland in Polish, and is derived from the word Polanie or “people of the fields.” POLSKA! YEAR started in spring 2009 and continue through 2010. I have never heard of this event until I started to do a little research about this blog entry. I guess “How It Is” by Polish artist Mirosław Bałka at Tate Modern is also a part of it as well.

Since the 2004 EU enlargement, there has been an massive influx of migration from 10 new member states of former eastern bloc to UK and Ireland, due to its liberal immigration policies and restrictive policies adopted elsewhere, and Polish is the biggest in number among others. Currently the Polish-born population in the UK is around half a million, and the total of Polish British is estimated about 1 million. Now I see many Polish grocery stores and bars (but not many restaurants), and supermarkets has a large corner of Polish foods. There is a Polish church in our neighborhood, and the area looks like a Polish town after the Sunday mess. Although east European immigration levels falling due to the recent economic downturn, but still large number of Polish are coming every year. Polish are known as a hard worker and now are a big consumer power as well, and British economy may not function without them anymore.

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The White Ribbon (Das Weisse Band) by Michael Haneke @ Barbican Cinema

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オーストリア出身のミヒャエル・ハネケ監督の新作で、2009年度の第62回カンヌ国際映画祭でパルムドール(最高賞)を受賞した作品、「The White Ribbon / Das weiße Band」(ホワイトリボン)を、バービカンシネマで見た。




We saw “The White Ribbon / Das weiße Band”, winner of the Palme d’Or at 2009 Cannes Film Festival, by Austrian director Michael Haneke, at Barbican Cinema.

The story takes place in a small Protestant village in northern Germany in 1913-14, just before the World War I breaks out. Among the people who live there are a baron who own large estate, a strict pastor with many children, a widowed doctor, a midwife, and their children, and a unmarried schoolteacher who tells this story many years later. Since the first incident happened, the doctor falls down from his horse and is severely wounded by wire placed at the entrance of his house, a string of disturbing and distressing accidents occur and gradually take on the character of a ritual of punishment and torture. No one knows who is the perpetrator, and villagers in this highly moralistic and stiff community worry and feel uncertain. Then the World War I started and the mysteries remain unsolved and forgotten in the excitement of the war.

The title “white ribbon” comes from the episode that the pastor tie a white ribbon to the arm of his two children as a constant reminder of their duties to purity. But these kids, who should be ‘pure’, are the possible offenders of this horrific incidents and act very suspicious. And these children are the ones who grow up in the rise of Nazism and Fascism; this infers future brutality and what former children are capable of during the time of Nazis.

Suppressed cruelty – there are no scenes of actual violence. But the black & white footage enhances unseen chilling horror. As in his other his films, Haneke never reveals who did these crimes, so the viewers have to guess ourselves (and it is a bit frustrating). It is a long movie, about 2 hours and half, but it didn’t bore me at all – one of the best work of Haneke for me and it deserves to Palme d’Or.

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The Policing Pledge: The Home Office’s new campaign

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最近テレビでよく見る、Home Office(イギリス内務省)が先日21日に新しく始めた「The Policing Pledge(警察活動の誓約)」の広告。190万ポンドをかけたこの全国的な広告キャンペーンは、11月、12月の間、イングランドとウェールズの警察が地域住民への義務を謳ったもので、テレビ、ラジオ、雑誌、インターネットで展開、また600万戸の家庭にパンフレットが配られる。

このPolicing Pledgeは、警官は80%の時間を地域のために使い、緊急ではない問題を届け出た住人には48時間以内に会うこと等を約束している。また、12月には、「Name and Shame(名前を公表して恥をさらす)plan」を地元警察と地方自治体に通達、有罪判決を受けた犯罪者をウェブサイトで公表する計画だ。

これは昨年度の統計で、盗みや窃盗などの軽犯罪から性犯罪、強盗、詐欺、暴力犯罪、薬物犯罪の重犯罪まで、全犯罪520万件のうち約3分の1に当たる170万件もの犯罪が、「screening out(ふるい分け)」されて取り調べてられていなかったとして、警察が批判を浴びたことが背景にある。最悪なのはロンドンの首都警察で、通報された犯罪のうち、たった48%しか捜査に至っていない。平均で75%の盗み、70%の器物損壊、55%の窃盗、44%の詐欺や偽造、20%の強盗、15%の暴力犯罪、2%の性犯罪、1%以下の薬物犯罪が「ふるいわけ」されたと言う。私たちもMの自転車を盗まれたり、バイクのナンバープレートを偽造されたりしたことがあるけれど、こんな些細なこと、警察は何もしてくれていないんだろうな。でもこの「ふるい分けシステム」が続けば、犯罪者のやり得、逆に犯罪率が高くなるか心配だ。この「約束」がちゃんと実行されて、地域住民が安心して生活できるよう頑張ってもらいたい。

ちなみにこの広告キャンペーンに使われているデザインは、第二次世界大戦初期の1939年に政府によって作られたポスター(実際には使われなかったが)、「Keep Calm and Carry On(平常心を保って、頑張れ)」を元にしている。このポスターが2000年に「再発見」されてから、多くの企業が使用、このデザインを使ったTシャツやマグカップ、バッグ、ポスター、tea towel(布巾)等さまざまなグッズが作られている。私もこのシンプルだけれど、インパクトのあるデザインが好きで、ポスターを2枚持っている。Mはしばしばパニクってしまうことがあるので、その際はポスターを指差し、冷静になるように自制を促すのにも役立っている。

Recently I have seen few times the TV advertisement of “The Policing Pledge“, a £1.9m national advertising campaign explaining what should be expected of police in England and Wales. Launched on November 21, the Home Office‘s campaign involves adverts on television, radio, magazines and internet throughout November and December, as well as leaflets distributed to 6 million homes.

According to the Policing Pledge, neighbourhood officers should spend 80% of their time on duty in the community and members of the public reporting a non-emergency problems will be seen within 48 hours. In December, the Home Office also introduce “Name and Shame” plan, which encourage police forces and councils to use websites to name key local convicted criminals.

What urges the Home Office to put up the Policing Pledge is the criticism against the police that failed to investigate around 1.7 million out of 5.2 million reported crimes last year, including sex attacks, robberies, fraud, violent crimes and drug offences, as well as large numbers of burglaries and thefts – around one-third of all offences were dismissed as unsolvable within hours by “screening out”. The highest rate of screening out was by the Metropolitan Police, with only 48% of reported offences dealt with in 2008/9. In parts of the country, an average of around 75% of theft are screened out, as well as around 70% for criminal damage, 55% for burglary, 44% for fraud and forgery, 20% for robbery, 15% for violent offences, 2% for sexual attacks, and less than 1% for drug offences. We experienced petit crimes like M’s bicycle stolen or his Vespa’s number plate cloned, but I guess that nothing have been done for it. But criminals are the sole winner with this “screening out” system, and this could endanger the security of the community and possibly encourage more crimes to happen. Hope this campaign will work to regain the public’s confidence and trust in police force, and contribute to reduce the crime rate.

The design used for the Policing Pledge is originally from “Keep Calm and Carry On“, the World War II motivational poster produced by the government in 1939 but never used. It was rediscovered in 2000 and has been re-issued by a number of companies, and used in a range of products such as T-shirts, mugs, bags, posters, tea towels and so on. I like this simple but strong design, and we have two posters ourselves. M gets panic easily and when that happens, it is useful for me to remind him what he should do, by just pointing out the poster!

The Policing Pledge Posters photographed in the summer 2009

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