One our best new friends here is the brilliant and totally charming Subodh Gupta. Over the past few days we’ve bumped into Subodh over tasty breakfast at Kashi, we’ve filmed him working at Aspinwall at 1am, been enchanted by his good humour and have watched him transform one of the main spaces in Aspinwall House. Yesterday was ‘boat-gate’ for Team Subodh as they had to do an enormous recreation of the ship in a bottle routine in order to get the last of his boats into the space. It all started so calmly, as sailors should, with a quick shot of rum in the boat, but things didn’t progress with such smooth sailing. The boat wouldn’t fit through the door. After knocking down part of the wall of the building next door to try and achieve the right angle (leaving this other building supported with a fairly skinny length of bamboo), this predicament ended up in checkmate – there was just no getting that boat into that building.
[At this moment we were doing helpful things like setting up timelapses from the roof and asking Subodh if it was, er, stressful?]
But – it’s Kochi, it’s India, it’s Subodh – so he smiled, laughed, we laughed, the workers smoked a fag and laughed and then it was decided – why not just leave it as it is? Looks pretty good… and as another artist said, it’s ok, people could still walk around the boat as it stuck half in and half out of the building.
[Timelapse running – everyone takes a break to think – we’ve got some great empty stills.]
But, final word as of yesterday was that they decided to cut the boat in half, take the two pieces into the space and then the boat builder was going to come and weld it back together again. Magic? Sometimes the most obscure and
physical of problems need the calmest and most rational of minds. Or just some Indian health and safety allowances, a taste for mayhem and a lot of good karma.
We’ll keep you posted…