WW2 Metal Art
During my stay in Netherlands last year I helped my brother Gert setting up his ‘metal artist’ website (*) as he really wants to express his considerable skills in that direction.
And early January this year Gert had a stroke of good luck, he unexpectedly received a very special and artistic assignment!
In brief; a client came with a large box with original remains and debris from a Lancaster bomber (**), shot down over Germany in the 2nd World War.
The question was: “Could he turn these leftover pieces into a respectful work of art?" (***)
The client had given others the same assignment in the past, but the results were quite disappointing.
The last failed attempt emerged from the box...
A lump of compressed leftovers that was supposed to represent a kind of "standard".
While Gert did not immediately have an idea of what it should be, he already felt the emotion of the subject.
Therefore he accepted the assignment, as such a special request is of course rare!
He carefully loaded all the pieces and brought them to his workshop.
With equal care he displayed all the debris on his work table.
Some weathered areas still had moss and twigs.
The Lancaster had exploded in mid-air and nothing was actually recognizable, but that made the challenge even larger.
His first design was based upon a comet with a flaming tail, after all the Lancaster in a way went down like one, but the client did not agree with that.
In the meantime, he started to dismantle the "standard" and let his thoughts go quietly about possible shapes.
By that time I finally returned to Thailand for which I was very happy, but of course I’d loved to see with my own eyes how Gert would tackle this unusual assignment.
It is important to note that there was some kind of spiritual connection between the client and the Lancaster crew.
With this in mind, Gert arrived at a ‘Circle of Life’.
It was not easy given the condition of the material he had to work with, but slowly the design started to crystallize.
The client himself was very pleased with this idea, but how he would ultimately react remained the question of course.
This assignment required time and instinct, it was quite a process!
In the end Gert had the final design ready. In his opinion it looks raw, rough and symbolizes the horrors of war.
The piece of art was finished, Gert had nothing more and nothing less to add.
An appointment was made and a few days later he was at the door with the artwork, wrapped in bubble wrap.
The client was speechless, he loved it and now the Circle of Life has been given a place of honor in his home!
(Unfortunately only in Dutch, but the photos should give you some ideas about his abilities!)
(***) The client has been active at the official memorial at the crash site in Germany as well and received permission to use some debris!