[Christo & Jeanne Claude] The Floating Piers, Finally Realized

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First conceived in 1970 and now it’s been realized.
On view from June 18 to July 3, 2016 at Lake Iseo / Lago d’Iseo in Lombardi, Italy, it’s a pity it only lasted for two weeks.

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Christo and Jeanne-Claude Holding Artwork

29 Nov 1963, Rome, Italy — 11/29/1963-Rome, Italy- Christo calls it “art” but many have mixed feelings about the artist’s new form. The young artist wraps objects, creatively and then props them in familiar surroundings such as this frame held held up by him and his assistant Jeanne-Claude. Christo has already shown his wrapped-up, new form of art in Paris and Cologne, West Germany, where he has perplexed the critics. Presently he’s exhibiting in Rome. — Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

Christo (1935) and Jaenne-Claude (1935-2009) has been doing amazing and monumental works letting people view and experience new and different perspective to usually famous and familiar buildings and sites by wrapping, draping, surrounding and erecting something around it. It’s like adding another dimension on familiar objects and sites.

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Wrapped Bottle, 1958

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Wrapped Motorcycle, 1962

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Wrapped Car (Volkswagen), 1963

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From Concept drawings

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Life-size test

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Manufacturing Polyethylene cubes in a factory in Fondotoce

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Anchoring to lakebed

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Assembling the cubes

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Installing felt covers

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Unfurling shimmering dahlia yellow fabrics

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Watched by Christo himself

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Getting wrapped

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Extended to streets of Sulzano

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Looks even more magical at night

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It’s a lot of work, but totally very rewarding kinda work.

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The first Christo project I was able to experience in person was Wrapped Reichstag in Berlin back in 1995.
On the backpacking trip all around the Europe, it was my first destination. And it was like you gotta BE there to really feel and enjoy it.
I saw Christo and Jeanne-Claude there at the site, they were still rather young back then.
The whole surrounding area around Reichstag was like huge festival with an enormous crowd from all around Germany, and from all around the world..
It transformed not only the Reichstag, but also everything around it, into something extraordinary, something interesting, something amazing.

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The second one I was able to experience was The Gates in Central Park, NYC back in 2005.
It was cool, but not as mesmerizing as the Reichstag to me.
Maybe it was too chilly out there, maybe it reminded me too much of Fushimi Inari Taisha in Kyoto, Japan.

No matter what, Christo’s work will be a good opportunity to experience something plain everyday life stuff in a totally new perspective, appreciating hidden values and aesthetics of the objects/buildings/sites revealed by wrapping it around.
If only I was able to travel to Lake Iseo before July 3..

Link; The Floating Piers

Link; Projects | Christo and Jeanne-Claude

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