The MacArthur Memorial has a collection of 31 works of art by John Cullen Murphy as well as an additional 2 works on loan to the museum. Why? While Murphy is famous for his work as the illustrator for the comics Big Ben Bolt and Prince Valiant, he was also a veteran of the Pacific War and an aide to one of MacArthur’s generals. People often refer to MacArthur’s staff as his “court.” We’ve talked about why that’s true (and not true) on other podcast episodes, but in this case, it’s an interesting way to think about the connection between Murphy and MacArthur. Every court has a court painter/artist. MacArthur had signal corps photographer Gaetano Faillace who captured many of the iconic MacArthur images of the war, but Murphy was clearly the artist of MacArthur’s HQ. To discuss Murphy, WWII, and the MacArthurs, the MacArthur Memorial Podcast interviewed Andrew Woelflein, presiding trustee of the Anne SK Brown Military Collection at Brown University - one of the largest military art collections in the US.
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