Skip to main content

Past Exhibitions

From Swords to Plowshares: Metal Trench Art from World War I

March 10 - July 15, 2018

Galleria Cases

From Swords to Plowshares offers a glimpse into the dazzling array of objects known as “trench art.” This term applies to any item made by soldiers, prisoners of war, or civilians from war material or any other material associated with armed conflict. The functional and decorative objects included in this exhibition focus particularly on metal art forms. Makers of trench art utilized artillery shells, bullets, shrapnel, aircraft parts, currency, and other miscellaneous metal scrap and applied materials. Their ingenuity and skill resulted in pieces from primitive decorated artillery shell cases executed in trenches to elaborately embellished artillery shell lamps, cigarette lighters, and ashtrays exhibiting extraordinary craftsmanship. From Swords to Plowshares demonstrates the rich variety of styles and techniques of decorative metalworking that were utilized during World War I. Trench art by makers from the following countries are featured: United States, Great Britain, France, Germany, Canada, Australia, Belgium, Italy, and Hungary.


This project is supported by the Edward Swift Shorter Bequest Fund, and Georgia Humanities, in partnership with the Georgia Department of Economic Development, through funding from the Georgia General Assembly.