Remember the Gates in Central Park? Remember being baffled by them, but then finding that interacting with the big orange banners somehow worked on an artistic level? Visitors really loved that project. Christo hasn’t stopped his monumental, high-concept works. I’m not sure how well-received this next endeavors will be.
The Westport Arts Center presents an exhibition by Christo and the late Jeanne-Claude featuring two works in progress: “Over the River, Project for the Arkansas River, State of Colorado,” and “The Mastaba, Project for the United Arab Emirates.” The reception is 6-8 p.m. Thursday, June 30.
Christo will be on hand, making this one of the biggest events the center has held for a while. Call ahead if you plan to come. Right now, their website says they’re at capacity, but they’re making room at 7 p.m. “as space allows.”
The exhibition features original collages, drawings and films created in preparation for the two upcoming projects that Christo plans to complete in the coming decade.
This is part of a tour that is expected to totally finance the high costs of these projects. Art ain’t free, especially when it’s something that shrouds the Arkansas River.
“Over the River” proposes 5.9 miles of silvery, luminous fabric suspended high above the Arkansas River along a 42-mile stretch in south-central Colorado in 2014. More details are at www.overtheriverinfo.com.
“The Mastaba” comprises 410,000 horizontally stacked oil barrels secured to an inner structure. The grandeur and vastness of the land will be reflected in the dimensions of The Mastaba which will have two vertical walls, two slanted walls and a truncated top: 492 feet (150 meters) high, 738 feet (225 meters) deep at the 60 degree slanted walls, 984 feet (300 meters) wide at the vertical walls. Can’t picture it? Me neither. See www.christojeanneclaude.net.