Sir William Coldstream | Artists | Collection | British Council − Visual Arts "During the war Coldstream was appointed an Official War Artist in the Middle East and Italy. In Egypt he had a studio close to the Pyramids and spent most of his time painting portraits of Indian soldiers. In Italy he was based in Capua and Rimini where his focus turned to recording damaged buildings and encampment. After being de-mobbed he took on a teaching job at Camberwell School of Art, where he was later appointed Head of Painting... He exhibited widely in his life time and in 1990 the Tate mounted a major retrospective." ‘Casualty Reception Station, Capua’, Sir William Coldstream, 1944 | Tate As a co-founder of the Euston Road School, Coldstream favoured a practice of painting based on acute observation. In 1943 he was appointed as an Official War Artist. After working in North Africa he requested permission to paint in Italy and arrived in Capua, Italy in May 1944. This picture of the Reception Station was completed five months later, after about seventy-five sittings in front of the subject. Coldstream positioned himself on the roof of a half-finished block of flats in front of the view, so that he would not be seen or disturbed. He later suggested that he had been more interested in depicting the architecture in sunlight than recording a military scene.