Friday, 17 July 2015
A tank of well-chosen tropical submarines makes for an interesting conversation piece.
I was a huge fan of the German TV series Das Boot when it was broadcast back in the 1980s, and I can never see a submarine without internally hearing those ASDIC pings and the dramatic theme tune of each programme's opening sequence. Although those who lost relatives to submarine action in WW2 probably found Das Boot unwatchable (a friend was telling me recently how her father survived torpedoes, twice) I found it absolutely compelling to share the agony of being depth-charged, or the cluttered, intimate claustrophobia of the submariner's everyday life.
Last year's Anselm Kiefer exhibition at the Royal Academy had a giant vitrine full of his signature lead U-boats in the courtyard, and the mental pings were particularly loud. I suppose my submarine tank above might be best seen as my own response to that, though this has only ocurred to me in the writing of this post. Funny how submerged our motivations and influences can be.