WWII Artist Alva Alegre Update: New Alegre Painting Emerges From the Woodwork

The elusive artist and photographer, Alva V. Alegre, is still making waves here at PortraitsofWar.   Two recent visitors to the site have been able to shed some light on his work. I’m posting the first here for followers of Alva’s work to see before I set into the newly acquired info regarding his background.

The following shot was sent to me by an art collector on the East Coast who luckily had the painting conserved and removed from a foam core backing after finding the work in a Virginia antique shop. The style is quintessential Alegre and incorporates the scantily clad and thin wasted figure so often depicted in his WWII work.


Newly Discovered Alegre Artwork

Newly Discovered Alegre Artwork


Alva Alegre at Work in England, 1944

Alva Alegre at Work in England, 1944



Alegre’s work has fascinated me for nearly six years, and I’ve spend countless hours searching for other examples of his work, as well as for tidbits that may lead to information related to his life.   For those of you who haven’t seen my posts on Alva, please check out the links below:











If you have an Alegre painting in your collection, please come forward with a photograph.  His work has been coming out of the woodwork in the past six years, and the story of his life is quickly unraveling.  A special thanks to Scott for his generous photograph of his prized Alegre work of art.



6 thoughts on “WWII Artist Alva Alegre Update: New Alegre Painting Emerges From the Woodwork

  1. Mr, Alegre worked at Watervliet Arsenal as a Technical Illustrator In the early 1960’s and a very good one, So anyone that thinks he died before 1970 is incorrect. I know this because he did work for my Technical Reports on several occasions.

      • In the early 1960’s he was working as the Benet Laboratories Technical Illustrator and statring to have problems with his vision. The last I knew he had retired to an artist community in Mexico where he could be among friends. As an illustrator It wa s best to give him only the most basic instructions because he will coms up with a better illustration that way. We all MISSED him because his replacement wasn’t very good.

      • I’ve emailed back and forth with several people who worked with him who essentially echoed the same statement. He never had a family in the states other than his work friends and artist friends and I really wish I knew more. I have so many of his photos and negatives and one of his portraits. He’s always on my mind. Thanks for sharing your memories – maybe it will lead to others coming forward one day.

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