Matthew Arnold Documents WW II North African Battlefields for Fall Book Release

By Barbara Goldman

 Artillery emplacement, Bunker Z84, Wadi Zitoune Battlefield, Libya.

New York City-based advertising, portrait and travel photographer Matthew Arnold is working on a new military photography book entitled, Topography Is Fate-North African Battlefields of World War II, to be  published in the fall by the German publisher, Kehrer Verlag. 

The book is a survey of North African battlefields of World War II and is is a visual testament to the trials of conflict in a desert  landscape. The imagery reflects the geography, nature and culture for an authentic representation of what desert conflict and conditions were like in battles fought over 72 years ago in the region.

The book will have an essay by Natalie Zelt, who is an independent curator and author based in Austin, Texas. From 2009 to 2012 she was the curatorial assistant for photography at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. While there she co-authored and co-curated, War/Photography: Images  of Armed Conflict and Its Aftermath, for which the authors were awarded the 2012 Kraszna-Krausz Best Photography Book by Sony's World Photography Awards.

There will also be a foreword by Hilary Roberts. Ms. Roberts is Head Curator of Photography at Imperial War Museums (IWM) in Great Britain. A specialist in the history of war photography, Roberts works with collections of historic war photography around the world. She also works closely with civilian and military photographers covering current conflicts.

You can view  some of the imagery from Arnold's book at his website:  and see  some of  the images below.

Goat track used by British Commandos in the raid on Rommel’s headquarters near Al Bayda, Libya./  © Matthew Arnold

Wadi Auda Water Pumping Station below Fort Auda, Libya./ © Matthew Arnold
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