95 large naval press photographs, each approx. 15 1/2" x 19 1/2", from the "Wings Over the Waves" exhibition in Leeds, UK, March 16-April 7, 1945, most annotated verso, documenting the role of the British Royal Navy's Fleet Air Arm and the importance of the Swordfish, Barracuda, and Fulmar planes during WWII, together with 15 smaller photographs, most approx. 15 1/2" by 15 1/2", 5 pieces of exhibition ephemera, and a presentation album comprised of 38 photographs of the formal opening, the exhibits, the famous visitors, with related press clippings and correspondence. Most photographs appear to have been displayed in the exhibition, featuring aircraft carriers and warplanes in action in the Atlantic, the Mediterranean, and European land campaigns, with images of paratroopers, bombers, aerial maneuvers and formations, reconnaissance missions, aircraft during landing and on deck, as well as life onboard the carriers. Photographs housed in archival cases, some cockling and minor abrasions, most with light to moderate edgewear, a few creased corners, many with pinholes indicating their use in the exhibition. Most undated, ca. 1940-1945. Album: oblong folio; half morocco. Sheffield, 1945.
The “Wings Over the Waves” exhibition drew over 100,000 regional visitors, and the album is a personal souvenir of one of its organizers, Mr. J.R.G. Marchetti, Deputy Regional Controller at the Ministry of Aircraft Production, Sheffield. The opening lunch was attended by a number of important military officers and celebrities, including Lord Harewood, Lt. Laurence Olivier and Lt. Cmdr. Ralph Richardson. The album includes signed photos of Olivier and Richardson, in addition to statistics and details about the exhibition's organization, individual displays, and attendance. Together with the photographs, the material is a vivid picture of the importance of aerial combat during WWII and the tremendous publicity it generated for the navy. It also reveals the sophisticated and diverse communication strategies used by the British Ministry of Information at a moment when public attention was shifting from Europe to the Pacific theater. With approx. 5 additional duplicates.
Book ID: 48035