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|Signatures on this item|
|*The value given for each signature has been calculated by us based on the historical significance and rarity of the signature. Values of many pilot signatures have risen in recent years and will likely continue to rise as they become more and more rare.|
Leutnant Siegfried Muller (deceased)
*Signature Value : £45
|Born in 1924, Siegfried Muller first flew with JG1 Molders in the south of France. In 1943 he took part in the air battles over Salerno and Monte Cassino. He joined IV./JG3 Udet in June 1944, where he was promoted to Staffelkapitan of 16 Staffel /IV Sturm Gruppe flying heavily armoured Fw190s. With this Gruppe he took part in the Ardennes Offensive and on 1st January 1945, Operation Bodenplatte. At the end of the war he was attached to JG7 for training on the Me262 jet fighter. Awarded the Iron Cross 1 and 2, he scored 17 victories, including 9 four-engined bombers.|
Oberst Eberhard Stephan (deceased)
*Signature Value : £60
|After serving in the Polish and French campaigns, Eberhard Stephan joined the 14th Panzer Division in 1941. In Russia he led his tanks to the Caucasus, and led one of the Panzer groups trying to break through to Stalingrad. With the 5th Panzer Division he took part in the biggest tank battle in history at Kursk. He was a commander in the 116th Panzer Division during the D-Day invasion: he fought at Caen, and the Battle of Arnhem. In the Ardennes Offensive, he led a crack unit of the 5th Panzer Army, and was awarded the Knight's Cross. He was one of the leading Panzer Commanders of World War II. Sadly he died on 22nd October 2008.|
Oberstleutnant Hans Lutz (deceased)
*Signature Value : £65
|Joining the Wehrmacht in 1938, Hans Lutz served in the Polish and French campaigns before being posted to the Russian Front in 1941. In 1944 he transferred to the 116th Panzer Division on the Western Front and was awarded the Knight's Cross on 9th December 1944. Hanz Lutz died 26th August 2005.|
Oberstleutnant Helmut Bennemann (deceased)
*Signature Value : £65
|Helmut Bennemann was born 16th March 1915. During the Battle of Britain Helmut Bennemann was Gruppenadjutant with I./JG52 on the Channel Front. In April 1942 he was Staffelkapitan of 3./JG52 in the east and was appointed Kommandeur of I./JG52 from June 1942 until October 1943. Posted to Italy in November 1943, he was promoted to Kommodore of JG53 (Ace of Spades) in this theatre and in the defence of Germany. He commanded JG53 on Operation Bodenplatte. Helmut Bennemann flew over 400 missions, scoring 92 victories and was awarded the Knight's Cross. He died 17th November 2007.|
|The Aircraft :|
|Fw190||The Focke-Wulf 190 development project began in 1937. Conceived as a hedge against total dependence on the Messerchmitt 109, the 190 was designed by Kurt Tank utilizing a radial engine. This was against generally accepted design criteria in Germany, and many historians believe that the decision to produce a radial engine fighter was largely due to the limited manufacturing capacity for in-line, water-cooled engines which were widely used on all other Luftwaffe aircraft. Despite these concerns, Tanks design was brilliant, and the 190 would become one of the top fighter aircraft of WWII. The first prototype flew in mid-1939. The aircraft had excellent flying characteristics, a wonderful rate of acceleration, and was heavily armed. By late 1940 the new fighter was ordered into production. Nicknamed the butcher bird, by Luftwaffe pilots, early 190s were quite successful in the bomber interceptor role, but at this stage of the war many Allied bombing raids lacked fighter escort. As the war dragged on, Allied bombers were increasingly accompanied by fighters, including the very effective P-51 Mustang. The Allies learned from experience that the 190s performance fell off sharply at altitudes above 20,000 feet. As a result, most Allied bombing missions were shifted to higher altitudes when fighter opposition was likely. Kurt Tank had recognized this shortcoming and began working on a high-altitude version of the 190 utilizing an in-line, water-cooled engine. Utilizing a Jumo 12-cylinder engine rated at 1770-HP, and capable of 2,240-HP for short bursts with its methanol injection system, the 190D, or Long Nose or Dora as it was called, had a top speed of 426-MPH at 22,000 feet. Armament was improved with two fuselage and two wing mounted 20mm cannon. To accommodate the changes in power plants the Dora had a longer, more streamlined fuselage, with 24 inches added to the nose, and an additional 19 inches added aft of the cockpit to compensate for the altered center of gravity. By mid 1944 the Dora began to reach fighter squadrons in quantity. Although the aircraft had all the right attributes to serve admirably in the high altitude interceptor role, it was not generally focused on such missions. Instead many 190Ds were assigned to protect airfields where Me-262 jet fighters were based. This was due to the latter aircrafts extreme vulnerability to Allied attack during takeoff and landing. The 190Ds also played a major role in Operation Bodenplatte, the New Years Day raid in 1945 which destroyed approximately 500 Allied aircraft on the ground. The High Command was impressed with the 190Ds record on this raid, and ordered most future production of the Doras to be equipped as fighter-bombers. In retrospect this was a strategic error, and this capable aircraft was not fully utilized in the role for which it was intended.|
|Artist Details : Nicolas Trudgian|
|Click here for a full list of all artwork by Nicolas Trudgian|
Cranston Fine Arts have now taken over all remaining stocks of Nicolas Trudgian prints from his previous publishers. We have made available a great many prints that had not been seen for many years, and have uncovered some rarities which lay unnoticed during this transition.
Having graduated from art college, Nicolas Trudgian spent many years as a professional illustrator before turning to a career in fine art painting. His crisp style of realism, attention to detail, compositional skills and bright use of colours, immediately found favour with collectors and demand for his original work soared on both sides of the Atlantic. Today, more than a decade after becoming a fine art painter, Nicolas Trudgian is firmly established within a tiny, elite group of aviation artists whose works are genuinely collected world-wide. When he paints an aircraft you can be sure he has researched it in every detail and when he puts it over a particular airfield, the chances are he has paid it a recent visit. Even when he paints a sunset over a tropical island, or mist hanging over a valley in China, most probably he has seen it with his own eyes. Nick was born and raised in the seafaring city of Plymouth, the port from which the Pilgrim Fathers set sail in 1620, and where Sir Francis Drake played bowls while awaiting the Spanish Armada. Growing up in a house close to the railway station within a busy military city, the harbour always teeming with naval vessels and the skies above resonating with the sounds of naval aircraft, it was not at all surprising the young Nick became fascinated with trains, boats and aircraft. It was from his father, himself a talented artist, that Nick acquired his love of drawing and surrounded by so much that was inspiring, there was never a shortage of ideas for pictures. His talent began to show at an early age and although he did well enough at school, he always spent a disproportionate amount of time drawing. People talked about him becoming a Naval officer or an architect but in 1975 Nick's mind was made up. When he told his careers teacher he wanted to go to art school the man said, 'Now come on, what do you really want to do? After leaving school Nick began a one-year foundation course at the Plymouth College of Art. Now armed with an impressive portfolio containing paintings of jet aircraft, trains, even wildlife, he was immediately accepted at every college he applied to join. He chose a course at the Falmouth College of Art in Cornwall specialising in technical illustration and paintings of machines and vehicles for industry. It was perfect for Nick, and he was to become one of the star pupils. One of the lecturers commented at the time: Every college needs someone with a talent like Nick to raise the standards sky high; he carried all the other students along with him, and created an effect which will last for years to come. Two weeks after leaving art college Nick blew every penny he had on a trip to South Africa to ride the great steam trains across the desert, sketching them at every opportunity. Returning to England, in best traditions of all young artists, he struggled to make a living. Paintings by an unknown artist didn't fetch much despite the painstaking effort and time Nick put into each work, so when the college he had recently left offered him a job as a lecturer, he jumped at the chance. The money was good and he discovered that he really enjoyed teaching. Throughout the 1970s Nick was much involved with a railway preservation society near Plymouth and it was through the railway society that he had his first pictures reproduced as prints. But Nick felt he needed to advance his career and in summer 1985 Nick moved away from Cornwall to join an energetic new design studio in Wiltshire. Here he painted detailed artwork for many major companies including Rolls Royce, General Motors, Volvo Trucks, Alfa Romeo and, to his delight, the aviation and defence industries. He remembers the job as exciting though stressful, often requiring him to work right through the night to meet a client's deadline. Here he learned to be disciplined and fast. Towards the end of the 1980's Nick had the chance to work for the Military Gallery. This was the break that for years he had been striving towards and with typical enthusiasm, flung himself into his new role. After completing a series of aviation posters, including a gigantic painting to commemorate the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Royal Air Force, Nick's first aviation scene to be published as a limited edition was launched by the Military Gallery in 1991. Despite the fact he was unknown in the field, it was an immediate success. Over the past decade Nick has earned a special reputation for giving those who love his work much more than just aircraft in his paintings. He goes to enormous lengths with his backgrounds, filling them with interesting and accurate detail, all designed to help give the aircraft in his paintings a tremendous sense of location and purpose. His landscapes are quite breathtaking and his buildings demonstrate an uncanny knowledge of perspective but it is the hardware in his paintings which are most striking. Whether it is an aircraft, tank, petrol bowser, or tractor, Nick brings it to life with all the inordinate skill of a truly accomplished fine art painter. A prodigious researcher, Nick travels extensively in his constant quest for information and fresh ideas. He has visited India, China, South Africa, South America, the Caribbean and travels regularly to the United States and Canada. He likes nothing better than to be out and about with sketchbook at the ready and if there is an old steam train in the vicinity, well that's a bonus!
This Week's Half Price Art
Commando Gunners by Scott Kirkwood.
Half Price! - £35.00
The Battle of Minden, 1st August 1759 by David Rowlands. (GL)
Half Price! - £300.00
Pak40 Mounted on SPW Half-Track by Jason Askew. (P)
Half Price! - £340.00
Grey Cover for Grey Rifles by Chris Collingwood. (Y)
Half Price! - £50.00
One Man and his Colours by David Rowlands (GL)
Half Price! - £280.00
Death of Socrates by Jacques Louis David. (Y)
Half Price! - £300.00
Alfred Rubbel at Kursk by David Pentland.
Half Price! - £80.00
Episode during the Siege of Paris by Edouard Detaille.
Half Price! - £20.00
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