About this artwork

McCullin travelled to Northern Ireland on numerous occasions during 1971, working as a photojournalist for ‘The Sunday Times Magazine’. This photograph depicting two British soldiers of the Royal Green Jackets arresting a Catholic youth in the Bogside, a Catholic majority neighbourhood in Derry/Londonderry, was first published on the magazine’s front cover in December 1971. It demonstrates McCullin’s expert use of natural light and his employment of vertical, horizontal and diagonal lines as compositional framing tools. The contrast between the youth’s white t-shirt and the black bloodstain on his chest is particularly dramatic, providing the viewer with a stark image of the violence of the conflict without explicitly depicting it.

Updated before 2020

  • artist:
    Don McCullinEnglish (born 1935)
  • title:
    British Soldiers in the Bogside, Londonderry, Arresting Catholic Youth
  • date created:
    1971; printed 2013
  • materials:
    Gelatin silver print on paper
  • measurements:
    51.00 x 32.50 cm (framed: 73.00 x 54.00 cm)
  • object type:
  • credit line:
    ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Purchased with the assistance of the ARTIST ROOMS Fund, supported by the Henry Moore Foundation and Tate Members 2013
  • accession number:
    AR01192
  • gallery:
  • subject:
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms
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Don McCullin

Don McCullin