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Label: christo

Wednesday 06th May 2015Christo Returns with Another Great Project

While not exactly the most prolific artist on the planet, Christo has finally returned from a 10 year hiatus to realize his latest masterpiece. Admittedly, his projects tend to be of a scale so grand and dramatic that he can hardly be expected to produce them as rapidly as someone working in more conventional areas, but a 10 year gap between projects is quite a long silence for the artist who once said, 'The work of art is a scream of freedom.' Unfortunately for him (and by extension, unfortunately for all of us), his wife and long-time collaborator, Jeanne-Claude, passed away during the preceding 10 years due to complications from a brain aneurysm, which no doubt contributed to his withdrawal from the art world.

However, Christo will scream again this year in Italy, as he plans to create a massive, temporary installation on Lake Iseo, following his signature style of ephemeral projects that bewitch the imagination. The project, dubbed 'The Floating Piers', will be a 3 kilometer pier that connects three of the lake's islands, all while wrapped in 70,000 square meters of silken yellow fabric. Like all of his projects, it's a huge undertaking to complete the installation, and it will only exist for a very short 16 days in the month of June 2016.

Christo's last piece, produced with his wife before her death, was an installation titled 'The Gates' in New York's Central Park, which consisted of - you guessed it - a staggering 7,503 'gates' of saffron yellow fabric that were interspersed along the various walking paths of the park. It cost an unbelievable $21 million USD to create, and took nearly 30 years to complete from conception to installation, but it was hailed by many critics as a triumphant success. The New York Times, that most prickly of art critics, called it "a work of pure joy, a vast populist spectacle of good will and simple eloquence, the first great public art event of the 21st century."

Hopefully, The Floating Piers will be hailed as an equal success, as it's to deny the fact that the world can always use a bit more good will and simple eloquence - both the art world and the rest of the world included. If you're in Italy during the magical two weeks that it exists, be sure to take the time to visit it.

Posted on May 06th 2015 on 04:11pm
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