Written by Sara Black
Sad news: Christo, one of my childhood art heroes, passed this week. Best know for large-scale, site-specific installations, Christo, along with his wife, artist Jeanne-Claude Denat de Guillebon, orchestrated the wrapping of Berlin’s historic Reichstag building, Paris’ Pont Neuf bridge and Miami’s Surrounded Islands (among others).
Why? Christo and Jean-Claude claimed that their projects had no deeper meaning that their immediate aesthetic impact. But I beg to differ. Sure, at first glance, these installations were monumentally beautiful from a visual standpoint but they allowed the viewer to interpret the sights in their own mind. Without prompting.
In my eight-year-old mind, when I first saw photos of Miami’s Surrounded islands project, I saw the juxtaposition of nature vs the man-made world.
Surrounded Islands, Biscayne Bay, Greater Miami, Florida, 1983. Photography by Wolfgang Volz.
Wrapped Reichstag, Berlin, 1971. Photography by Wolfgang Volz.
The Floating Piers, Lake Iseo, Italy, 2016. Photography by Wolfgang Volz.