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Ploesti, The Vital Mission by Robert Taylor.


Ploesti, The Vital Mission by Robert Taylor.

Col Leon Johnson aboard the damaged Suzy Q emerges through an inferno of intense ground fire and dense palls of acrid burning oil. More seriously hit and smoking, another B-24 Liberator completes its bombing run. By the end of that first day of May 1943, the Ploesti oil fields were in ruins and the B-24 crews of the 8th and 9th Air Forces had dealt a vital blow to the Axis war machine.
Item Code : AX0034Ploesti, The Vital Mission by Robert Taylor. - This Edition
TYPEEDITION DETAILSSIZESIGNATURESOFFERSYOUR PRICEPURCHASING
PRINT Signed limited edition of 1250 prints.

SOLD OUT
Paper size 34 inches x 24 inches (87cm x 64cm) Ardrey, Philip
Cameron, William R
Zemke, Hub
Compton, Keith
Potts, Ramsay
+ Artist : Robert Taylor
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OUT
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All prices on our website are displayed in British Pounds Sterling


Signatures on this item
NameInfo


The signature of Colonel Hub Zemke (deceased)

Colonel Hub Zemke (deceased)
Best known as leader of the legendary Zemkes Wolfpack, Hub Zemkes famous 56th Fighter Group was the top scoring Fighter Group in the European Theather of operations. Zemke pioneered the use of the P-38 Droop Snoot as a bomb aiming aircraft which led the bomb-loaded P-47s on to the target with great accuracy and success. He later commanded the 479th Fighter Group P-38s. One of the outstanding fighter leaders of the war, Hub Zemkes personal tally 17.5 victories. Sadly, he passed awway on 30th August 1994.


The signature of Colonel William R Cameron

Colonel William R Cameron
Bill Cameron flew all his 38 combat missions with the 44th Bomb Group. He first saw combat in Nov 1942. He was the only pilot who came over to Europe with 44th BG and returned with them at the end of the war. Described by General Leon Johnson as "one of the best combat leaders we had", Bill was the pilot of "Buzzin' Bear" on the Ploesti Raid. Before the mission he asked British anti-aircraft gunners which plane, in a low flying formation, they would fire at. They told him they would shoot the highest: Bill Cameron took "Buzzin' Bear" through the Ploesti inferno lower than most other pilots and got her home with only minor damage, earning the DSC for his part in the historic raid.
Keith Compton
Major General Ramsay Potts (deceased)Ramsey Douglas Potts Jr was born on October 24 1916 in Memphis, Tennessee. Potts was educated at the local grammar school and at Darlington School before going on to receive a degree in commerce at the University of North Carolina. Ramsey Douglas Potts in September 1942 trained as a bomber pilot and arrived at Alconbury, near Huntingdon. His squadron was blooded in attacks against targets in northern France, but in November it was briefly assigned to convoy protection in the build-up to Operation Torch. On November 21st Potts was patrolling in the Bay of Biscay when five German fighters attacked his B-24. During a fierce encounter his gunners shot down two and damaged a third German aircraft before Potts was able to escape and land the B-24 at an airfield in southern England. Potts was a senior pilot in the 93rd Bomb Group, and commanded one of the groups long-range B-24 Liberator squadrons, which he led on the daring low-level attack against the oil refineries in Romania on August 1st 1943. During the Ploesti raid Potts's aircraft was badly damaged, and some of his crew were wounded. Potts managed to keep his bomber flying despite severe damage to the controls, and he was one of a small number to return to Benghazi after almost 14 hours in the air. Potts's B-24 (Duchess) had more than 50 fist-sized holes in the wings and fuselage. During the Ploesti raid the B-24 squadrons lost 532 men and 54 aircraft, and the damage sustained by the surviving aircraft was such that only 30 of the original force of 178 were serviceable for combat the following day. He completed 38 bombing missions, many as the leader of the mass formation of bombers against targets such as Hamburg, Brunswick and Bremen. Potts was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, two Silver Stars, the Legion of Merit, three DFCs, the Bronze Star and five Air Medals. He was also awarded the British DFC for his outstanding courage and heroism and the French Croix de Guerre. He retired from the Air Force Reserve as a major-general in 1972. Major-General Ramsey Potts died in August 2006 aged 89.
Philip Ardrey
The Aircraft :
NameInfo
Liberator
Artist Details : Robert Taylor
Click here for a full list of all artwork by Robert Taylor


Robert Taylor

The name Robert Taylor has been synonymous with aviation art over a quarter of a century. His paintings of aircraft, more than those of any other artist, have helped popularise a genre which at the start of this remarkable artist's career had little recognition in the world of fine art. When he burst upon the scene in the mid-1970s his vibrant, expansive approach to the subject was a revelation. His paintings immediately caught the imagination of enthusiasts and collectors alike . He became an instant success. As a boy, Robert seemed always to have a pencil in his hand. Aware of his natural gift from an early age, he never considered a career beyond art, and with unwavering focus, set out to achieve his goal. Leaving school at fifteen, he has never worked outside the world of art. After two years at the Bath School of Art he landed a job as an apprentice picture framer with an art gallery in Bath, the city where Robert has lived and worked all his life. Already competent with water-colours the young apprentice took every opportunity to study the works of other artists and, after trying his hand at oils, quickly determined he could paint to the same standard as much of the art it was his job to frame. Soon the gallery was selling his paintings, and the owner, recognising Roberts talent, promoted him to the busy picture-restoring department. Here, he repaired and restored all manner of paintings and drawings, the expertise he developed becoming the foundation of his career as a professional artist. Picture restoration is an exacting skill, requiring the ability to emulate the techniques of other painters so as to render the damaged area of the work undetectable. After a decade of diligent application, Robert became one of the most capable picture restorers outside London. Today he attributes his versatility to the years he spent painstakingly working on the paintings of others artists. After fifteen years at the gallery, by chance he was introduced to Pat Barnard, whose military publishing business happened also to be located in the city of Bath. When offered the chance to become a full-time painter, Robert leapt at the opportunity. Within a few months of becoming a professional artist, he saw his first works in print. Roberts early career was devoted to maritime paintings, and he achieved early success with his prints of naval subjects, one of his admirers being Lord Louis Mountbatten. He exhibited successfully at the Royal Society of Marine Artists in London and soon his popularity attracted the attention of the media. Following a major feature on his work in a leading national daily newspaper he was invited to appear in a BBC Television programme. This led to a string of commissions for the Fleet Air Arm Museum who, understandably, wanted aircraft in their maritime paintings. It was the start of Roberts career as an aviation artist. Fascinated since childhood by the big, powerful machines that man has invented, switching from one type of hardware to another has never troubled him. Being an artist of the old school, Robert tackled the subject of painting aircraft with the same gusto as with his large, action-packed maritime pictures - big compositions supported by powerful and dramatic skies, painted on large canvases. It was a formula new to the aviation art genre, at the time not used to such sweeping canvases, but one that came naturally to an artist whose approach appeared to have origins in an earlier classical period. Roberts aviation paintings are instantly recognisable. He somehow manages to convey all the technical detail of aviation in a traditional and painterly style, reminiscent of the Old Masters. With uncanny ability, he is able to recreate scenes from the past with a carefully rehearsed realism that few other artists ever manage to achieve. This is partly due to his prodigious research but also his attention to detail: Not for him shiny new factory-fresh aircraft looking like museum specimens. His trade mark, flying machines that are battle-scarred, worse for wear, with dings down the fuselage, chips and dents along the leading edges of wings, oil stains trailing from engine cowlings, paintwork faded with dust and grime; his planes are real! Roberts aviation works have drawn crowds in the international arena since the early 1980s. He has exhibited throughout the US and Canada, Australia, Japan and in Europe. His one-man exhibition at the Smithsonians National Air and Space Museum in Washington DC was hailed as the most popular art exhibition ever held there. His paintings hang in many of the worlds great aviation museums, adorn boardrooms, offices and homes, and his limited edition prints are avidly collected all around the world. A family man with strong Christian values, Robert devotes most of what little spare time he has to his home life. Married to Mary for thirty five years, they have five children, all now grown up. Neither fame nor fortune has turned his head. He is the same easy-going, gentle character he was when setting out on his painting career all those years ago, but now with a confidence that comes with the knowledge that he has mastered his profession.

More about Robert Taylor

 

AVIATION PRINTS

Click above to see all of our half price aviation prints - Eight random items are displayed to the right.

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 On 31st August 1944, 6 Mosquitoes of 305 Polish Squadron, Lasham, 2nd TAF were led by Wing Commander Orlinski to attack oil refineries at Nomexy, south of Nancy, France. Diving down and releasing their bombs before escaping at tree top height they destroyed 4 large containers and several smaller ones. All aircraft safely returned after their four and a half hour sortie. Fl Lt Eric Atkins DFC(bar) KW(bar) and his navigator Fl Lt Majer can be seen exiting the area to reform on the other 3 Mosquitoes who have already finished their bombing run. This was Atkins 61st operation, finishing the war with 78 ops over 3 tours.

Mosquito Attack by Graeme Lothian. (Y)
Half Price! - 240.00
One of the most advanced aircraft of World War II, the AR234 with its twin turbojets could carry out its high altitude reconnaissance or bombing duties at speed which made interception by Allied aircraft virtually impossible.
Luftwaffe Arado 234 B-2 by Barry Price.
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Douglas C47 Dakotas fly into the landing and drop zone at Renkum Heath, September 17th 1944.

Arnhem by Simon Smith (D)
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 Routine, though essential, maintenance is carried out on a 501 Sqn Hurricane at the height of the Battle of Britain during the Summer of 1940. Hurricane P3059 <i>SD-N</i> in the background is the aircraft of Group Captain Byron Duckenfield (deceased).

Ground Force by Ivan Berryman. (D)
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 High above the trenches in April 1918, 74 Squadron engage the famed JG 1 led by the renowned ace baron von Richthofen in his distinctive bright red DR 1. Edward Mick mannock flying a SE5.a diving down top engage another Fokker Dr1 as the red baron flies past momentarily catching each others eyes. The new CO of 74 squadron, major Grid Caldwell MC (bar) New Zealands top ace can be seen above entering the dog fight. But it would be Mannock who would go on to great fame. with 61 confirmed victories and to win the VC, DSO (bar) and MC (bar) After 74 squadron he replaced Billy Bishop of CO 85 Squadron on the 3rd July 1918, scoring 46 victories in the Se5.a He was killed by ground fire near Lestram, France on the 26th July 1918. his Victoria Cross being gazetted on the 18th July 1919. The red baron CO of the Richthofens Flying circus didnt survive the month, also killed by ground fire on the 24th April, he was buried by the Allies with full military honours.

Dawn Dog Fight, Mick Mannock VC by Graeme Lothian.
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 Two Spitfire Mk1Bs of 92 Squadron patrol the south coast from their temporary base at Ford, here passing over the Needles rocks, Isle of Wight, in the Spring of 1942.

In Them We Trust by Ivan Berryman. (Y)
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 After service in the 96th Infantry Regiment, Smirnov joined the XIX Corps Air Squadron in 1914, shooting down twelve enemy aircraft in the course of two years. When revolution swept through Russia in November 1917, he escaped the Bolsheviks via a White counter-revolutionary route, eventually joining the RAF in England, serving at the Central Flying School at Upavon. He is shown here in his silver Nieuport 17, having just despatched a Roland C.II.

Captain Ivan Smirnov by Ivan Berryman.
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 Erich Lowenhardt was already the holder of the Knights Cross 1st and 2nd Class for acts of bravery even before becoming a pilot. After serving as an observer for a year, he was eventually posted to Jasta 10 in 1917 where he immediately began to score victories, sending down balloons and enemy aircraft at a fearsome rate. He was appointed Commander of Jasta 10 one week before his 21st birthday, making him one the youngest pilots to rise to such a rank in the German Army Air Service. He continued to increase his score steadily throughout 1917 and 1918, but was involved in a mid-air collision with a Jasta 11 aircraft on 10th August. Lowenhardt elected to abandon his aircraft, but his parachute failed to deploy and the young ace fell to his death. He flew a number of aircraft, but this yellow-fuselaged Fokker D.VII was his most distinctive and is believed to be the aircraft in which he was killed. His final victory total was 54.

Oberleutnant Erich Lowenhardt by Ivan Berryman. (APB)
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NAVAL PRINTS

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B219.  Deutschland Passing Through the Kiel Canal by Ivan Berryman.

Deutschland Passing Through the Kiel Canal by Ivan Berryman.
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 HMS Intrepid embarks some of her landing craft during the Falklands conflict of 1982.
HMS Intrepid by Ivan Berryman
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With her mizzen top already gone and her sails aloft having received severe punishment, Victory breaks through the line behind the French flagship Bucentaure, delivering a shattering broadside into her stern.  So severe was this opening fire that the Bucentaure was effectively put out of the rest of the battle, although Admiral Villeneuve himself was to miraculously survive the carnage.  Beyong Victory can be seen the French Redoubtable, which is receiving fire from Victorys starboard guns, and the Spanish San Leandro is in the extreme distance.  Most of Victorys stunsails have been cut away, but it was her stunsail booms that became entangled with the rigging of the Redoubtable when she put her helm to port and ran onto her.  Admiral Nelson fell shortly afterward, having received a fatal wound from a musket ball fired by a French sharpshooter in Redoubtables mizzen fighting top.  The Temeraire can be seen approaching the fray to the right.

Trafalgar - The Destruction of the Bucentaure by Ivan Berryman.
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 Type 42 HMS Southampton (D90), Type 22 Beaver (F93), Type 42 Manchester (D95) and Type 21 Amazon (F169) formate during a World cruise on which they visited 17 countries in 9 months.

Around the World by Ivan Berryman (AP)
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RFA Fort Austin makes a leisurely rendezvous at sunset with the Polaris submarine HMS Renown on patrol somewhere in mid ocean. Soon a rubber inflatable will be launched from the Fort, and mail and fresh fruit and vegetables will be transferred before darkness sets in and makes the operation more hazardous.

The Rendezvous by Robert Barbour.
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 Two Fairey Firefly fighter-bombers of 810 Sqn, Fleet Air Arm, overfly the carrier HMS Theseus during the Korean War.

HMS Theseus by Ivan Berryman.
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 The mighty Bismarck returns fire to the fast-approaching HMS Hood at the start of a battle that would see both adversaries tragically sunk. The Bismarck would later be attacked by Swordfish aircraft from HMS Ark Royal, damaging her stearing and allowing her to be caught by the British battleships Rodney and King George V. The once proud German battleship would be ruthlessly pounded into a twisted and burning wreck and finally finished by HMS Dorsetshire with torpedoes at around 10:30 hours on the morning of May 27th 1941. HMS Dorsetshire and HMS Maori combed the area of the sinking for survivors, between them picking up a total of 110 out of an original complement of 2,300.

Bismarck Replies to HMS Hood by Ivan Berryman. (Y)
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 HMS Norfolk and HMS Belfast of Force I are shown engaging the Scharnhorst which has already been hit and disabled by both HMS Duke of York and the cruiser HMS Jamaica.  Scharnhorst was never to escape the clutches of the British and Norwegian forces for, having been slowed to just a few knots by numerous hits, fell victim to repeated torpedo attacks by the allied cruisers and destroyers that had trapped the German marauder.

HMS Norfolk at the Battle of the North Cape by Ivan Berryman (AP)
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WORLD WAR TWO MILITARY PRINTS

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 Trapped within a rapidly decreasing perimeter, the exhausted BEF along with elements of the French 1st Army appeared to be at the mercy of the mighty Luftwaffe. No one though had reckoned on the brilliant leadership of Admiral Ramsay nor the gallant and unstinting efforts of the military and civilians who managed to rescue over 330,000 troops in nine days.

Operation Dynamo, Dunkirk, France 24th May - 4th June 1940 by David Pentland. (Y)
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 Wherever the GIs went they took their Jeeps with them, and before the war was run the little quarter-ton, 4-wheel drive, utility vehicle was as well known around the world as the Model T Ford. Nicolas Trudgian has painted a compelling image, set back in time when the little Jeep was omnipresent on and around the roads and battlefields of a war-torn world. It is Christmas 1944 and, as a gaggle of 339th FG P-51 Mustangs disturb the peace of this ancient English village, a little Jeep waits patiently outside the pub while her occupants sample the local ale. A wonderfully nostalgic painting that will bring back pleasant memories to many.
Welcome Respite by Nicolas Trudgian.
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 Men of the US 381st Infantry Regiment, 96th Division supported by the tanks of 763rd and 713th Flamethrower Tank Battalions, during the assault on Yaeju Dake. This escarpment, known as Big Apple was the last in a series of tough Japanese defence lines on the south of the Island.

Taking of Big Apple, Okinawa, 10th - 14th June 1945 by David Pentland. (Y)
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 Superb figure study of the 82nd Airborne in 1944.

82nd Airborne by Chris Collingwood.
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 Replacements from 1st Battalion Irish Guards and Sherman tanks of the 46th Royal Tank Regiment move through the debris of Anzio town towards their jump-off positions for the Battle of Campoleone Station.

Anzio, Italy, February 1944 by David Pentland. (GL)
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 US Marines of the 2nd Battalion, 2nd RCT, 2nd Marine Division, supported by LVTs and tanks, take part in the successful but bloody assault on Betio Island, part of the Tarawa Atoll. Operation Galvanic as it was known became the first step on the island road to Japan itself.

Red Beach Two, Tarawa Atoll, 20th November 1943 by David Pentland. (GL)
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 King Tigers of Kampfgruppe von Rosen, 3rd Company Heavy Tank Battalion 503, preparing to move out from the Tisza bridgehead to counter Soviet pressure on German forces attacking to the northwest at Debrecen during the first battles to defend the Hungarian capital of Budapest.

Tigers in the Mist by David Pentland. (B)
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 Polish 7TP (Twin Turret) light tank of Captain F. Michalowskis training company breaks out from the street barricade to counter attack German reconnaissance elements.

Warsaw, September 1939 by David Pentland.
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