© National Portrait Gallery, London
by Walter Benington
toned bromide print, 1914
8 in. x 6 in. (202 mm x 152 mm) overall
- Irene Rooke (1878-1958), Actress. Sitter in 9 portraits.
- Walter Benington (1872-1936), Photographer. Artist associated with 66 portraits.
Benington's joint portrait of Irene Rooke and her second husband Milton Rosmer, was exhibited at the London Salon in 1914. This portrait dates from the same sitting. Others who sat to Benington at this time included the music hall star, Lilian Shelley, and Pauline Chase, who appeared as Peter Pan from 1906 to 1913.
Following Germany's declaration of war on France and invasion of Belgium, Herbert Henry Asquith, the British Prime Minister, declares war on the German Empire on August 4, 1914. The popular belief that the conflict would be 'over by Christmas' was soon found to be a bitter underestimate of the scale of the war.
Art and science
The fist issue of the periodical Blast
is published by Wyndham Lewis, announcing the advent of Vorticism. This movement, named by Ezra Pound and taking in art and poetry, combined the vitality and dynamism of Italian Futurism with the geometric structure of Cubism. Vorticism was a direct challenge to the perceived quaint and domestic style of the Bloomsbury group and Roger Fry's Omega Workshop.
On June 28th 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria is assassinated in Sarajevo leading to Austria's declaration of war against Serbia and triggering the First World War. Germany declared war on Serbia's ally, Russia, and then marched on France via Belgium. Soon all of Europe and most of the world was embroiled in total war.