Former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill was a great statesman, Nobel Prize winner and a painter.
Now, some of his works are on display at the Hills and Dales Estate. For this week only, six of Churchill’s 500 masterpieces will be exhibited inside the Hills and Dales Visitor Center. The paintings are mainly landscapes of places Churchill visited between 1922-1947.
“You can basically follow his life through his paintings and see where he’s been,” said Carleton Wood, executive director of the Hills and Dales Estate.
The exhibit is just a preview to a larger showcase of Churchill’s works at the Millennium Gate Museum. That display, titled “The Art of Diplomacy: Winston Churchill and the Pursuit of Painting” will open on Oct. 3.
According to Duncan Sandys, Sir Winston Churchill’s great grandson, the two time Prime Minister first picked up a paint brush back in 1915, following the disastrous Gallipoli Campaign in the midst of World War I, in which thousands of Allied soldiers died while invading the Ottoman Empire. Churchill left office soon after. Sandys said painting helped Churchill through a difficult period in his life, plus redefined his outlook on life and relaunched him into the political arena. Many say painting also allowed Churchill to become a more effective leader and stay one step ahead of Adolph Hitler and Nazi Germany during World War II.
On Tuesday evening, Sandys and Millennium Gates President, Rodney Cook, also spoke to a sold out crowd about Churchill’s love of painting and his ties to Georgia. Along with the paintings, several never-before-seen photographs of Churchill and his family plus memorabilia are also on display.
“Everyone knows the name ‘Churchill’ and the World War II history. But it’s interesting to see the other side of the man while he was facing personal struggles,” said Wood. “I think everyone can relate. We all look for ways to get away from hectic schedules and pressures in life. Churchill did too, to regenerate himself.”
Sir Winston Churchill’s paintings, memorabilia and photos will be on display at the Visitors Center at the Hills and Dales Estate through Sunday. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Saturday and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. The exhibit is free and open to the public.