Concealment and Deception: The Art of the Camoufleurs of Leamington Spa 1939 - 1945 

22 July - 16 October 2016

This exhibition tells the story of the camouflage establishment based in Royal Leamington Spa during World War 2 (1939-1945). The Civil Defence Camouflage Establishment was found at the start of the war with Nazi Germany to develop camouflage for strategically important installations like factories, power stations and airfields. Later, in 1941, the CDCE was expanded to include a Naval Camouflage Section and renamed the Camouflage Directorate. The exhibition presents the work of the camouflage staff - often known as 'camoufleurs' - against the backdrop of life on the 'Home Front'.

The exhibition includes an important group of paintings, watercolours and drawings loaned by the Imperial War Museums, complemented by others from Leamington Spa Art Gallery & Museum, the Herbert Art Gallery in Coventry, the Henry Moore Institute in Leeds, and from private collections. Artists featured include Mary Adshead, Dorothy Annan, Stephen Bone, Louis Duffy, Evelyn Dunbar, Eric Hall, Cedric Kennedy, Edwin La Dell, Colin Moss and James Yunge-Bateman. Their work will be on display alongside clothing, equipment and documents relating to the Home Front in Leamington Spa. 

This exhibition has been made possible due to the generous support from The Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, The Art Fund and FLAG. 

art fund

Paul Mellon

Colin Moss

Camouflaged Factory Buildings, by Colin Moss, c.1939-1941, pencil and watercolour on paper, Leamington Spa Art Gallery & Museum, LEAMG: A1026.2007.