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Lillian Forrester (née Williamson); Evelyn Manesta

2 of 3 portraits of Evelyn Manesta

© National Portrait Gallery, London

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Lillian Forrester (née Williamson); Evelyn Manesta

by Unknown photographer
Criminal Record Office memorandum, Issued 24 April 1914
8 1/2 in. x 13 1/2 in. (217 mm x 342 mm) overall
Acquired from Criminal Record Office, 1914
Photographs Collection
NPG x136417

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In April 1913 Evelyn Manesta and Lillian Forrester smashed the glass of thirteen paintings in Manchester City Art Gallery. At their trial, Forrester stated it was important to make a protest in Manchester where Emmeline Pankhurst had founded the militant movement. This memorandum, drawing 'special attention' to Manesta and Forrester, was issued by the police to the National Portrait Gallery following Mary Richardson's attack on The Toilet of Venus (The Rokeby Venus) by Diego Velázquez at the National Gallery.

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Current affairs

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.

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