The Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped

9 August 2019 Événement , Art contemporain

See Christo’s new temporary work ...

The project in a few words

Christo, in close collaboration with the Centre Pompidou and the Centre des monuments nationaux (CMN), will create a temporary artwork in Paris called The Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped (Project for Paris, Place de l’Étoile-Charles de Gaulle). This work will be on view for 16 days, from Saturday 19 September to Sunday 4 October 2020 and will require 25 000 square metres of recyclable polypropylene fabric in silvery blue and 7 000 metres of red rope.

    

Drawing 2019 in two parts 15 x 96" and 42 x 96" (38 x 244 cm and 106.6 x 244 cm)
Pencil, charcoal, pastel, wax crayon, enamel paint, architectural and topographical study, hand-drawn map on vellum and tape Photo: André Grossmann © 2019 Christo

 

As a prelude to the production of this work, a major exhibition will be presented at the Centre Georges Pompidou, from 18 March to 15 June 2020, retracing Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s years in Paris from 1958 to 1964 as well as the story of the project The Pont-Neuf Wrapped, Project for Paris, 1975-1985. “The exhibition at the Centre Pompidou will reveal the historical context of the period during which we lived and worked in Paris,” said Christo.

The Centre des monuments nationaux, the government institution that manages and conserves the Arc de Triomphe, is pleased about the realisation of a project that demonstrates its commitment to contemporary creation and that honours one of the most emblematic monuments in Paris and in France.

The Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped will be self-financed by Christo through the sale of his preparatory studies, drawings, collages of the project as well as scale models, works from the 50s and 60s and original lithographs dedicated to other subjects. He will not benefit from any public or private funding.

Christo - L’Arc de Triomphe empaqueté

Drawing 2018 30 1/2 x 26 1/4" (77.5 x 66.7 cm) Pencil, charcoal, pastel, wax crayon, enamel paint and tape on a brown board Photo: André Grossmann © 2018 Christo 

   

Story of the project

In 1961, three years after they met in Paris, Christo and Jeanne-Claude began creating works of art in public spaces. One of their projects was to wrap a public building.

At the time, Christo, who was renting a small room near the Arc de Triomphe, made several studies for a project there, including, in 1962, a photomontage of the Arc de Triomphe wrapped, seen from the Avenue Foch. In the 1970s and 1980s, Christo created a few additional studies. Almost 60 years later, the project will finally be realised.

   

Throughout the entire period when the artwork is on display, as well as during its preparation, the space beneath the Arc de Triomphe over the consecrated stone slab, where, since 1923 the Eternal Flame has burned in front of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, will be fully maintained. As always, veterans associations and volunteers committed to the values of the French Republic will ensure the continuity of remembrance and of the daily ceremony of rekindling the flame, paying homage to the Unknown Soldier with the appropriate solemnity.

"Thirty-five years after Jeanne-Claude and I wrapped the Pont-Neuf, I am eager to work in Paris again to realise our project for the Arc de Triomphe," declares Christo.

    

Christo - L’Arc de Triomphe empaqueté

Collage 2018 in two parts 12 x 30 1/2" et 26 1/4 x 30 1/2" (30.5 x 77.5 cm et 66.7 x 77.5 cm) Pencil, charcoal, wax crayon, fabric, twine, enamel paint, photograph by Wolfgang Volz, hand-drawn map and tape Photo: André Grossmann © 2018 Christo

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