Fighting Red Tails by Robert Taylor.
With their distinctive red tails, P-51 Mustangs of the 332nd Fighter Group - the famed Tuskegee Airmen, climb to operational height as B17 Fortresses from the 483rd Bomb Group manoeuvre into formation at the start of another long and dangerous mission over Germany, Oct 1944. A welcome sight for the Fortress crews, the renowned all-black Tuskegee pilots were credited for never losing an escorted bomber to enemy aircraft. For the first time ever Robert pays tribute to the Tuskegee Fighter Pilots in this stunning portrait of one of the most famous fighter units of WWII.
|Item Code : DHM2596||Fighting Red Tails by Robert Taylor. - This Edition|| Buy 1 Get 1 Half Price!|
|TYPE||EDITION DETAILS||SIZE||SIGNATURES||OFFERS||YOUR PRICE||PURCHASING|
|PRINT|| Signed limited edition of 800 prints. || Print paper size 33 inches x 23.5 inches (84cm x 60cm)|| McGee, Charles|
+ Artist : Robert Taylor
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|General descriptions of types of editions : |
|Signatures on this item|
Colonel Charles McGee
|Charles McGee graduated from flight school and shipped out to Italy in December 1943 as a flight Lieutenant in the 302nd fighter Squadron, 332nd Fighter Group. He flew missions in North Africa, Italy and Germany, and got his first victory on 24th August flying escort in the Ploesti oil field raid. After the war this outstanding flyer commanded fighter squadrons throughout the United States, Italy, the Philippines and Germany, logging up more than 6,100 hours in 409 combat missions spanning World War II, Korea and Vietnam. Serving in the armed forces for 30 years he holds the record of flying more combat missions than any other USAF pilot in history. Born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1919, Charles MeGee, who was to become a Command Aviator who would fly combat missions in three different military conflicts, spent his childhood in Ohio, Illinois, and Iowa. Following two years attending the University of Illinois, WW 11 began, and McGee was sworn into the US Army enlisted reserves on October 26, 1942. He was accepted for pilot training in November and entered the Army Air Corps Aviation Cadet Training Program. McGee earned his wings and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in June 1943, as a member of Class 43-F at Tuskegee Army Air Field. He was assigned along with many of the other black pilots who had earned their wings at Tuskegee to the 332 nd Fighter Group in Italy. With the 302nd Fighter Squadron McGee trained in the P-40 and would later fly more than 82 tactical missions in the P-39. His fighter group was then transferred into the Fifteenth Air Force and he first flew the P-47 and several weeks later the P-51 Mustang. In this duty, along with other "Tuskegee Airmen," McGee performed admirably surmounting many of the unfortunate hurdles placed in their path. The Tuskegee Ainnen became known for their superlative effort at protecting allied bombers from attacking German fighters. McGee is credited with downing one Fw- 190, and the destruction or damage of many others on the ground. He became a flight leader, was promoted to Captain, and after flying 54 more combat missions, returned to Alabama as a twin engine flight instructor. In 1950 McGee flew 100 more combat missions with the 67th Fighter Bomber Squadron of the 18th Fighter Group. He was then made Commander of the 44th Bomber Squadron flying out of Clark Field in the Philippines. Later he would serve with an F-89 Interceptor Squadron, and following a number of interesting operational and staff assignments he would serve as Commander of the 16th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron deployed in Vietnam. In his year in Vietnam, McGee would fly another 173 missions. Later assignments included Air Liason Officer for USAEUR and 7th Army, Chief of Maintenance for the 50th Tactical Fighter Wing, Director of Maintenance Engineering for AF Communication Service, and Commander of Richards-Gebaur AFB, and the 1840 Air Base Wing. He retired from the USAF in 1973 with 6,300 flying hours, including 1,100 hours flown on fighter combat missions. Col. McGee earned a BA Degree in Business Administration and worked for many years in the real estate business with ISC Financial Corporation. He also served as Director of Administration forthe city of Prairie Village, Kanasas, and as Manager of the downtown Kansas City Airport. Now fully retired Charles lives with his wife, the former Frances Nelson of Champaign, Illinois. The McGees have three children, ten grandchildren, and five great grandchildren. His numerous decorations include the Legion of Merit with one cluster, the Distinguished Flying Cross with two clusters, the Bronze Star, the Air Medal with 25 clusters, the Army Commendation Medal, the Air Force Commendation Medal with one cluster, a Presidential Unit Citation, and the Korean Presidential Unit Citation, to name only a few.|
|First Lieutenant Arthur Sherman||Arthur Sherman joined up as soon as he could on 10th April 1942, and after training was posted to the 15th Air force in Italy, joining the 779th bomb Squadron, 464th Bomb Group flying B25s. He flew his first combat mission on 2nd May 1944. Transferring to the 483rd Bomb Group he flew B17 Fortresses and was regularly escorted by the 332nd Tuskegee Fighter Group. Among his numerous strategic bombing missions were included the momentous raid to Memingen airfield to destroy the factory where over 600 Me109s were being made every month, together with the new Me262 jet fighter.|
|Second Lieutenant Elbert Hudson||In September 1942 elbert Hudson joined up and went for pilot training at the Tuskegee flight school, graduating as a fighter pilot on P51Bs. He soon found himself posted to the 332nd fighter Group in Europe, where he undertook the first of many combat missions in June 1944. Elbert flew combat with the 332nd right through until the end of hostilities in May 1945.|
|Second Lieutenant Lowell Steward||Entering the Tuskegee flight school for training in july 1942, Lowell steward graduated as a fighter and was posted to Europe to join the 100th Fighter Squadron, 332nd fighter Group flying P51s. During his service Lowell flew 143 combat missions with the 100th FS, and remained in the service until July 1946.|
|Staff Sergeant Leon Walden||Joining up in November 1942 Leon Walden trained to become a waist gunner on B17 fortress, being posted to Europe, joining the 840th bomb Squadron, 483rd bomb Group in Italy. Going into combat on 12th April 1944, Leon flew 50 combat missions with the 483rd, including the heroic raid on the Me262 jet fighter factory at Memingen Airfield on 18th July 1944, when the group was attacked by a force of over 75 Luftwaffe fighters.|
|The Aircraft :|
|Mustang||The ubiquitous North American P-51 Mustang, which many consider to be the best all-around fighter of WW II, owes its origins to the British Air Ministry. Following Britains entry into WW II in 1939, the RAF was interested in purchasing additional fighter aircraft from American sources, particularly the Curtiss P-40. Curtiss, which was busy, was unable to guarantee timely delivery so the British approached North American Aviation as a possible second source for the P-40. North American chose to propose its own fighter design which would use the same Allison engine as the P-40. Utilizing new laminar flow wings, the North American fighter was expected to have performance better than the P-40. Developed in record time the new aircraft was designated as a Mustang I by the Brits, whereas the USAAF ordered two for evaluation which were designated XP-51 Apaches. Intrigued with the possibility of using this aircraft also as a dive bomber, North American proposed this to the USAAF which decided to order 500 of the P-51 aircraft to be modified for dive bombing use. Designated as the A-36 Invader, this version of the Mustang utilized dive flaps, and bomb racks under each wing. Some reinforcing of the structural members was also required because of the G-forces to be encountered in dive bombing. A-36s entered combat service with the USAAF prior to any P-51s. In early 1943 the 86th and 27th Fighter Bomber Groups of the 12th Air Force began flying A-36s out of Northern Africa. Despite some early problems with instability caused by the dive flaps, the A-36 was effective in light bombing and strafing roles. It was not, however, capable of dog fighting with German fighters, especially at higher altitudes. Despite these drawbacks one USAAF pilot, Captain Michael T. Russo, who served with the 16th Bomb Squadron of the 27th Fighter Bomber Group, was credited with five confirmed aerial victories in the A-36, thereby becoming the first mustang ace.|
|Artist Details : Robert Taylor|
|Click here for a full list of all artwork by 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.
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