War scene on Warwick Avenue
This 1941 drawing was made by the Hungarian artist Joseph Bato. It shows a barrage balloon over Warwick Avenue in Maida Vale during the Second World War. Like many areas of London, Maida Vale was subjected to heavy bombing during the war.
Barrage balloons were large airship-shaped balloons positioned in areas that were at risk from heavy bombs. The barrage balloons acted as obstacles to enemy aircraft and hindered the bombing raids.
Artist Joseph Bato
Joseph Bato was a well-known landscape painter who left Hungary to study under Matisse in Paris. He was injured in the First World War, but continued to work in areas of combat as a war artist. His charcoal drawings became well-known through a book called Defiant City. He later worked as an art director and costume designer on films such as The Third Man and The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp.
Museum number 58.11/18