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SOS
SOS

Image credit: De Morgan Collection

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Evelyn responded to the horror and futility of the First World War with a series of works that attempted to come to terms with the conflict between good and evil. This painting takes its title from the then relatively new Morse code cry for help. The literal translation of the message ('save our souls') also conveys a sense of what is really at stake here. The sole female figure in white robes symbolises the innocence of the victims of war. She stands upon a solitary rock, hands outstretched and her eyes turned towards heaven, seeking both physical and spiritual deliverance from her plight as she is besieged by thundering waves and a myriad of sea serpents. Dragons and sea monsters are often used in Evelyn’s symbolist lexicon to reference evil and death.

Title

SOS

Date

1914–1916

Medium

oil on canvas

Measurements

H 93.4 x W 65.5 cm

Accession number

P_EDM_0056

Acquisition method

gift

Work type

Painting

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De Morgan Collection

England

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