Henri Farré and the Birth of Combat Aviation

28 September 2018–27 January 2019

Exhibition Overview


Henri Farré, British Handley-Page Bomber, 1918, Oil on canvas.

The Chrysler Museum of Art will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I with Henri Farré and the Birth of Combat Aviation. The exhibition will include more than 20 paintings by the French combat artist as well as related materials that will educate audiences about the training, combat and equipment used during the early days of combat aviation. The Military Aviation Museum’s scale model of a Nieuport 11, the most important French fighter plane of the war, will be on display in Chrysler’s Museum’s Huber Court from Nov. 6–10.

Farré was the first to experience war in the air and depict it on canvas. Born in France, he trained in Paris and was a successful portrait painter in Buenos Aires, Argentina. At the age of 43, Farré left his comfortable and long-established artistic practice to return home and serve his country. He flew with the military air services as often as he could, sometimes daily, and then applied his experiences to the canvas at day’s end. Trained by Impressionist artists, his accomplished and atmospheric paintings show his efforts to find the language to communicate his experiences.

(Photo courtesy of Ed Pollard.)

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