Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Jacob Baal-Teshuva, Wolfgang Volz
Christo and Jeanne-Claude
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“All our work is about freedom.”
The universe of Christo and Jeanne-Claude
The work of the artist couple Christo (1935–2020) and Jeanne-Claude (1935–2009) resists categorization. It is a hybrid of art, urban planning, architecture, and engineering, but above all an aesthetic uniquely their own: surreal and ethereal environmental interventions that have graced monuments, public parks, and centers of power alike.
This compact book spans the complete career of the couple who were born on the very same day, met in Paris, fell in love, and became a creative team like no other. With rich illustration, it spans Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s earliest projects in the 1950s right through to The Floating Piers, installed at Lake Iseo, Italy, in 2016. The book celebrates all of the couple’s most famous environmental interventions, such as The Gates in New York’s Central Park and the Wrapped Reichstag in Berlin, while also featuring early drawings and family photos unknown to the wider public.
Christo and Jeanne-Claude began their collaboration in 1961, and lived in New York City since 1964. Jeanne-Claude died in 2009; Christo died in 2020. Their large-scale projects include Wrapped Coast, Australia, 1968–69; Valley Curtain, Rifle, Colorado, 1970–72; Running Fence, Sonoma and Marin Counties, California, 1972–76; Surrounded Islands, Biscayne Bay, Florida, 1980–83; The Pont Neuf Wrapped, Paris, 1975–85; The Umbrellas, Japan–USA, 1984–91; Wrapped Reichstag, Berlin, 1971–95; Wrapped Trees, Riehen, Switzerland, 1997–98; The Gates, Central Park, New York City, 1979–2005; The Floating Piers, Lake Iseo, Italy, 2014–16 and The London Mastaba, Serpentine Lake, Hyde Park, 2016–18. Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s temporary work of art L’Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped, Project for Paris is scheduled for September 18–October 3, 2021.
Jacob Baal-Teshuva, born 1929, is author, critic and independent curator of museum shows. He studied at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and New York University. His numerous publications include works on Marc Chagall, Alexander Calder, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol, and Christo and Jeanne-Claude. Jacob Baal-Teshuva lives and works in New York and Paris.
Wolfgang Volz has worked with Christo and Jeanne-Claude as the exclusive photographer of their works since 1971. He was also project director (with Roland Specker) for Wrapped Reichstag, Berlin, 1971–95 and (with Josy Kraft) for Wrapped Trees, Riehen, Switzerland, 1997–98, and was in charge of The Wall – 13,000 Oil Barrels, Gasometer Oberhausen, Germany, 1998–99 and Big Air Package, Gasometer Oberhausen, Germany, 2010–13. His close collaboration has resulted in many books and more than 300 exhibitions in museums and galleries around the world.