studio1.1 is proud to present an exhibition dedicated to the memory of Edith Cavell, on the centenary of her death. A British nurse running a Red Cross hospital in a Brussels occupied by the Germans, she was executed for treason, for helping British Servicemen escape into neutral Holland.
We believe it is important to remind ourselves of Cavell's final statement, given to a British chaplain the night before her death: "'Patriotism is not enough... I must have no hatred or bitterness towards anyone."
Words that are visible, carved on her statue in central London, immediately outside the National Portrait Gallery. Words, however, that did not appear on the statue when it was erected in 1920, and words which George Bernard Shaw, in the preface to his play 'Saint Joan', accused the authorities of leaving out because of their subversive potential.
It is that subversion we would like to celebrate.
These days, when commemoration of wars 'we' won can easily tip into nationalistic self-congratulation, while wars we started, unwon and probably unwinnable have led to a major humanitarian crisis we are refusing to take responsibility for, there could be no better time to honour Edith Cavell, her work and her words. There are no borders, no boundaries on humanity.
This exhibition brings together four artists, from the nations involved in the fighting around Brussels. Although the artists' work does not necessarily have any direct bearing on Edith Cavell or on the war itself, they are artists we have had a long connection with - Yves Beaumont is from Belgium, Annie Kevans from France, Richard Bateman from Britain and Michaela Zimmer from Germany.
It is worth a footnote, at least, to mention Edith Cavell's local links: she trained at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, alongside which runs Cavell St, and there is a plaque to her on St Leonard's Hospital in Kingsland Road, where she also worked.
with RICHARD BATEMAN, YVES BEAUMONT, ANNIE KEVANS, MICHAELA ZIMMER