All the Submarines of the United States of America, Chris Burden, 1987

NM_2013_Chris-Burden_Benoit-Pailley_70353489Chris Burden’s gallery-sized installation consists of 625 identical cardboard models that represent the entire United States submarine fleet dating from the late 1890s, when submarines entered the navy’s arsenal, to the late 1980s. The wall behind them lists the names of each submarine in black sans-serif type. Burden designed this installation as an amalgam of elements rather than as a discrete project. He suspended the cardboard models from the ceiling, placing them at various heights so that as a group they appear, quite aptly, to be a school of fish swimming through the ocean of the gallery space.