WW2 leaders and painters

I know that both Churchill and Hitler painted. I don’t know about Roosevelt, Tojo, Mussolini, Stalin and the others. Who is considered the Top Dog in terms of painting ability? On average which leader’s painting would be the most valuable?

This page by a militaria collector discusses the market for artworks by Hitler. The prices seem in the $10,000+ range, which would roughly accord with Robert Harris’ statement (in Selling Hitler, 1986; Faber, 1991, p113; the classic account of the Hitler Diary hoax, it also more generally discusses peoples’ desire to own Nazi artefacts) that they used to go for about £5000.
Of those that have been sold, Churchill paintings seem to go for signicantly more. The total number of works by both seem to be roughly comparable (300-1000), but a talk by his daughter says that most of Churchill’s are still owned by his family. They certainly seem to be less readily available than Hitler works.

There’s an old thread - which I’ve searched for, but can’t find - on Hitler’s abilities as artist. The general consensus was that he was okay, but had serious difficulty in drawing people. When the issue of the comparison came up, most posters easily preferred Churchill’s paintings.

Stalin was devoid of artistic expression.
He also never kept a diary, or confided his inner thoughts to others.
Artistic expression is just that: expression.
Stalin was too secretive, too paranoid, for art.

According to the famous author and art critic Franz Liebkind, Churchill was a rotten painter whereas Hitler could paint an entire apartment in one afternoon.

A magazine, I think it might have been Life, printed some of Hitler’s art. I believe he studied as an architectural draftsman for a while and that showed in the pictures that were printed. The paintings of towns looked a lot like colored isometric drawings of buildings, without, as I recall, perspective. It isn’t surprizing that he wasn’t all that good at people. People aren’t the subject of a lot of architectural drawings.


(Sorry - forgot which forum we were in.)


Two coats!

In power, I don’t doubt - all those leaden lying speeches. But I’m sure I remember reading that in his youth he fancied himself as a poet. And he wasn’t immune to classical music, even if no performer or creator, hence the story about the musicians having to repeat the Mozart piano concerto they’d just broadcast because Stalin wanted a recording of it.