You’ve probably seen such overboots worn by German and Russian soldiers on the Eastern front during the Second World War, but the very same straw overboots were already in use during the First World War on the Alpine front. Indeed, the standard metal-shod leather marching boots worn by most troops conducted the cold directly to man’s feet with awful consequences. These overboots made of straw enclosed the conventional footwear, and although cumbersome ideally insulated the leather boots against the effects of sub-zero temperatures. Shared by men on static duties, such as sentry details, this footware proved to be effective. Several examples of such items are displayed in MART Museum in Rovereto and were probably found in glaciers after the war.
We couldn’t miss in our artistic journey some Futurist painting: here’s Cannoni in azione, a 1915 painting by Gino Severini. Don’t be surprised by the French texts: indeed Italian Futurists were very influenced by French culture. Moreover, this work may have been painted before Italy’s entry in war (May 24, 1915), and therefore seen as a celebration of the power of French artillery.