The Great Escape I (Vault)

Vault image

Dimensions:  80 x 60 x 110cm (vault)
Old teak and oak school desks.

The Great Escape I, references the famous escape from the German Nazi’s POW (Prisoner Of War) camp, Stalag Luft III during the Second World War (1939-45). A Hollywood movie was made about it starring Steve McQueen (1963). The Allied Forces prisoners who escaped did so using a wooden gym vault to hide the men who dug the escape tunnel inside, and to cover the hole whilst the digging took place. This replica of the gym vault is made from old discarded school desks. The intention is to suggest that through education anyone can escape the difficulties of their surroundings, no matter how desperate they may seem. Out of the 76 prisoners who escaped, only 3 made it to freedom, but it kept the entire camp focused on a mission rather than their misery. The vault also references competition, play and fitness as an avenue for escape – as it was for the Greek Olympians.