First World War art

Page 6 – Kiwi war artists

Find out more about some of the Kiwi war artists who produced unofficial and official war art during the First World War. Many of their works are now part of the New Zealand National Collection of War Art (NCWA) held at Archives New Zealand. Each thumbnail links to a page with further information.

Horace Moore-Jones

Simpson and his donkey painting

1867/1868 – 3 April 1922

At the outbreak of war in 1914, Horace Moore-Jones was 42 years old, but gave his age as 32 so he could enlist with the New Zealand Expeditionary Force (NZEF). Sent to Gallipoli, Moore-Jones was asked to draw sketches of the area because there were no effective maps. Towards the end of 1915 his drawing hand was injured, but while recovering in England he somehow managed to produce almost 80 watercolours of Gallipoli. More...

Nugent Welch

Nugent Welch

30 July 1881 – 16 July 1970

New Zealand's first official war artist. After serving with the New Zealand Rifle Brigade on the Western Front, Nugent Welch was appointed divisional war artist in April 1918. His simple landscapes, which often featured ruined buildings and seldom included people, portrayed the desolate aftermath of battle. More...

George Butler

George Butler

15 January 1872 – 9 August 1936

George Butler became an official war artist in August 1918. There are almost 100 of his works in the National War Art Collection, making him New Zealand's most prolific First World War artist. His finished work seemed to be the sort of thing the government wanted: it conveyed the success of the battles without focusing too much on the human loss. More...

How to cite this page

'Kiwi war artists', URL:, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 20-Dec-2012