Kursk - Clash of Steel

Nicolas Trudgian

 

 

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Kursk - Clash of Steel Nicolas Trudgian

The Germans launched their attack on the Kursk salient on 5 July 1943, and for both sides this was 'maximum effort'. The Soviets however, informed by intelligence of the impending German attack, had ample time to prepare huge defensive works with hundreds of planned anti-tank belts. They deployed 10 Tank Corps, 5 Tank armies, 1 mechanised Corps and 14 Field Armies equipped with 4000 anti-tank guns and 6000 tanks. The Soviet Air Forces were equally impressive - 2600 aircraft.

The Germans, outnumbered in every department, were forced to scrape together whatever serviceable tanks they could from their badly under-strength Panzer formations. Most of the tanks deployed were old Panzer Three or Fours, with only 147 Tiger Tanks available for action. The northern German attack made very little headway but, in the south, the Germans had grouped all of the SS Panzer forces into the Second SS Panzer Corps and these units, despite the enormous Soviet forces ranged against them, began to smash their way through the Soviet defences. The Luftwaffe too had brought together 1200 aircraft and these made an immediate impact on the fighting - on the first day alone German fighters broke up massive formations of Soviet aircraft, over 400 victories being claimed. On 8 July the Soviets counter-attacked against the Second SS Panzer Corps and it is this action that Nicolas Trudgian has magnificently captured in his dramatic, and highly detailed, painting.

A Tiger and other elements of the 2nd SS Panzer Division "Das Reich" clash with Soviet armour, while overhead the Luftwaffe attack at very low level. The Messerschmitt Me109Gs of JG52 find themselves in the midst of this fiery cauldron providing close cover for the Luftwaffe anti-tank aircraft - in this case the Henshel 129s of Sch G1 armed with heavy 30mm cannon to hunt the Soviet armour. By the end of the day's fighting the Soviet III Mechanised Corps had been virtually destroyed. This was only the beginning however, and for another five days the opposing sides clashed at close quarters, but the Soviets withstood the violent onslaught to take the initiative. For the Germans it was the beginning of an agonising retreat that ultimately would end in defeat amongst the burning ruins of Berlin two years later.

 

PRINT DETAILS


THE SIGNED & NUMBERED EDITION

Adding great historical significance to Nicolas Trudgians authentic rendition of this epic battle, every print of Kursk - Clash of Steel is individually signed in pencil by two Luftwaffe fighter Aces who flew on the Eastern Front during World War Two.

Feldwebel HEINZ RADLAUER
Feldwebel ERICH BRUNOTTE

Matching numbered certificate of authenticity included.

Overall Print Size 33" x 23" (inches) Printed in lightfast inks on acid free archival paper.

 

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PRINT PRICES

Signed and Numbered Print
UK £120.00
Edition Size - 350

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