The Home Front, painting, 1940/41

Min enjoying her book launch, Brown's Hotel, Laugharne, 1967

Stanley in his studio, Greenfield, 2004
Wartime Newport:
The Home Front

An Artist's War

Stanley Lewis was working as a teacher at Newport School of Art when war was declared in 1939. During 1940 the Newport Education Committee commissioned him to paint a record of civilian war workers in action on the Home Front.

The Red Cross, St John's Ambulance, Auxiliary Fire Service and the ARP (Air Raid Precautions) were all represented. Wartime events in Newport, including the crash of a Heinkel bomber on the town, were also depicted.

Stanley was called up in 1941 and did his basic training in North Wales. As the war progressed he served with units in Lancashire and Somerset. Demobbed immediately after the war, he became principal of Carmarthen School of Art.

Stanley, Min and their children lived near Laugharne and would become friends with Dylan and Caitlin Thomas. This relationship would inspire Min to write a book about Laugharne illustrated by Stanley. Stanley stayed at Carmarthen School of Art until 1967 and their book was published the same year.

After Min's death in 2003, Stanley reprinted the book Laugharne and Dylan Thomas in her memory.

In 2006, aged 100, he was honoured with an MBE and is currently working on an illustrated book of his wartime experiences.

Copyright: Newport Museum & Art Gallery Newport South Wales NP20 1PA


Stanley Lewis, MBE
Newport Stories