Ross Townsend

Mehmetcik Monument

Oil on Canvas

107 x 107cm


When researching a subject for the Gallipoli Art Prize, I was inspired by the Mehmetcik Monument sculpture; it’s meaning and the story of a Turkish soldier carrying an Australian soldier in the Dardanelles Campaign.  The Turkish soldier raised a white flag to carry a wounded Australian soldier to Australian lines and returned to his side before fighting again. The monument depicts loyalty, courage, respect and spirit whilst in battle and its realistic form gives you a feeling of strength. I enjoyed the challenge painting the colours and texture of this solid bronze statue and trying to portray its rustic qualities. A friend visited the location and photographed the statue and supplied me with the photographic reference material to complete the painting. Whilst I have not been fortunate to visit Gallipoli as yet, my wife and I are inspired by the historic stories and hope to visit it the near future.