Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas

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Scrap for War
  • Charles Frederick Ramus
    born: Denver, Colorado, United States ; died: Englewood, Colorado, United States
  • Scrap for War, 1939
  • Where object was made: United States
  • lithograph
  • Paper Type: wove
  • Sheet/Paper Dimensions: 14 x 16 1/2 in
    Sheet/Paper Dimensions: 356 x 420 mm
    Mat Dimensions: 20 x 25 in
  • Gift of the WPA Arts Project
  • Not on display
  • 0000.0270

Scene with giant and small items made of metal. There are two figures crawling on the ground and two figures standing. Large scrap pile of iron (metal) cylinders and other objects. Two men playing marbles, two men standing, and two dogs.

As war drew closer (the U.S. would enter the war in 1941 after the bombing of Pearl Harbor), some artists used their works to express their fear and foreboding. In "Scrap for War," the artist imagines a fantasy wasteland where tiny human figures are dwarfed by giant metal forms. The two boys shooting marbles and their two observers seem scarcely aware of the menacing build-up of war machinery around them.