Refusing to sign not only the manifesto supporting Romain Rolland, but also Jean Grave's National Defense declaration, Luce confirmed his stance as anti-military and a patriot. His drawings for La Bataille Syndicaliste reveal the prosecution of Guillaume II rather than the German people presented as a victim. Owing to the lack of missions on the front line, where his son had been mobilized, Luce revisited the train stations of Paris, and exhibited his depictions of them in the Bernheim Gallery. The station, the antechamber of the front line, strips the exhausted combatants and workers alike of all heroics, but certainly not of magnanimity. In 1917, critic Louis Vauxcelles opposed Detaille, a military painter, and his successors including Scott, to Luce, a painter who depicted labor and train stations during the war, resonating "in this atmosphere where hate and pity, wondrous life, and terrible death are somberly presented. Nothing escapes his scope: not a single play of light; not a rictus; not a single gesture of a mother, a wife, a child, or a soldier. In these pieces, he has been able to retain the melodrama of the scene as much as its saga-like ambiance. "


  • Title: Gare de l'Est, 1917
  • Creator: Maximilien Luce (Painter)
  • Date Created: 1917
  • Location Created: Paris (France)
  • Physical Dimensions: 1,615 (w) x 1,295 (h) m
  • Provenance: acquisition date: February 16, 1954 (donation)
  • Subject Keywords: Soldier, World War I
  • Type: Tableau
  • Medium: Peinture à l'huile
  • Inventory: 11,071
  • Historic Period : World War I (1914-1918)

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