Tanks – Fascinating Beasts

When I was much younger, I was obsessed by tanks – the military sort, not water tanks.   I mentioned this in another post (link) as the reason I found myself working as a modelmaker in Amsterdam for many years.

To begin with my interest was sparked by the animal like quality of these machines, rather than the destructive potential they represented all too well,   If you watch a tank moving around in the forest or mud, with all its crew safely locked up inside it, they have a seriously animal like quality about them.  Obviously the animals they most resemble are dinosaurs, the larger ones who presumably also ignored such minor things as trees, smaller dinosaurs and so forth as they went about their daily business.

Like dinosaurs, tanks seem to be totally indifferent to the sort of country they are moving around in, be it mud, dust, forest, fields or whatever, all the same to them, as it must have been to the larger types of dinosaur I imagine.

This short video of a bunch of tanks training gives you perhaps an idea of what it is I mean.

If you can watch this video without thinking about the men inside those large machines, but simply watch how they move, lurching around, pushing through bushes and so on then I think you will see what I mean.

Here to give you a better idea of what I mean, are a bunch of dinosaurs doing their thing…  the similarity must be obvious to you.

While I was still trying to be a sculptor, roughly between the ages of 19 to 25, I sent a lot of time attempting to get this huge animal quality of tanks into my sculptures, creating truck loads of closed steel boxes that moved around in a blind but assured fashion, but none of them satisfied me, as inevitably they were relatively small, and both tanks and dinosaurs typically weigh in at around 20 to 60 tones – rather larger than I could manage with my limited financial and physical means. Continue reading “Tanks – Fascinating Beasts”