Barbara Diener — The Rocket’s Red Glare (signed)

Barbara Diener — The Rocket’s Red Glare (signed)

Signed with silver pen on colophon page | 220 x 300 mm | hardcover | 360  pages (48 pages on transparant paper) | Texts by Wernher von Braun | English | isbn 978-90-832858-8-7

The Rocket’s Red Glare uses the life of instrumental German rocket scientist, Wernher von Braun, as a metaphor for the selective way history is told. This series challenges the often dual retelling of significant 20th century events, starting in Nazi-era Germany and culminating in the moon landing. Diener’s interest in interpreting this chain of events comes from her own reckoning with history and my complicated German heritage surrounding World War II. Barbara Diener: “My complex feelings about my heritage are embodied in Wernher von Braun’s life. A Nazi turned NASA scientist, von Braun’s life was filled with as much contradiction as his groundbreaking rockets were, which were used as missiles and spacecraft alike. In 1932, Wernher von Braun went to work for the German army, which fell under National Socialist rule the following year. Accounts of the exact year he joined the Nazi party vary, but by 1937 he was the technical director of the Army Rocket Center in Peenemünde where the V2 rocket (Vengeance Weapon 2) was created and tested. These missiles, which bombed London, were manufactured in an underground factory by slave laborers who endured horrific conditions if they survived. Much of Wernher von Braun’s Nazi past was classified for decades to celebrate his contribution to the U.S. space race eg. as the engineer of the Saturn V, the rocket that took man to the moon.
Rather than presenting a complete view of this history, I leave intentional holes in the narrative. These gaps serve as questions, looking at how stories pass through generations and how facts are distorted, embellished or undermined”

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