Maize Cutting, No Man's Land, Serre, Somme, France
© The Artist

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Maize Cutting, No Man's Land, Serre, Somme, France 1997
  • Scottish Art
This image is part of an ongoing project exploring the landscapes of the First World War, in particular the Somme. Since the early 1980s Cattrell has been photographing the ways in which man scars nature whether through thoughtless agricultural and industrial processes or the destruction of war. He gives a sharp contemporary twist to Britain's romantic landscape tradition. His images can be read both literally and metaphorically. He is interested in the camera's potential for 'ambiguity and abstraction', allowing him to transform the landscape into a form of still life.

Glossary Open

Abstract art

Art in which there is no attempt to represent anything existing in the world, particularly used of the 20th century onwards. ‘Abstraction’ refers to the process of making images that may in part derive from the visible world but which are reduced to basic formal elements.

Battle of the Somme

There were two battles at Somme in northern France during the First World War. The latter lasted from July to December 1918 and was one of the bloodiest battles in history with hundreds of thousands killed on both sides.


A figure of speech in which one thing stands for another. By extension, it is any representation that symbolically refers to something else.


Refers to artworks that emphasise drama and emotion.

Abstract art, Battle of the Somme, Metaphor, Romantic


  • Acc. No. PGP 82.11
  • Medium Silver gelatine print
  • Size 36.70 x 45.00 cm
  • Credit Presented 2001