Monday, April 28, 2008
Christo & Jeanne Claude
The married duo creates environmental installation art. Their most recent installation is The Gates in New York City's Central Park. Although their work is visually impressive in terms of scale, the artists have repeatedly denied that their projects contain any deeper meaning than their immediate aesthetic. The purpose of their art is simply to make the world a "more beautiful place" or to create new ways of seeing familiar landscapes.
Being environmentalist artists, Christo and Jeanne-Claude recycle all the supplies used to make their installations. For example, in The Gates the saffron flowing fabric was sent to a firm in Pennysylvania, where it was shredded and respun. The vinyl framing was ground into half a million pounds of orange chips used to make fencing. The steel, even the screws, went to a scrap yard in New Jersey, where it was melted down and sold worldwide.
The idea of recycling all of the used materials creates an image of a circle: extracting resources from the earth, using them, and then decomposing them and letting them be reabsorbed into the earth . All of the resources used to build the installation are reused and in a sense return to the earth, just as our bodies will decay with time(as morbid as it might sound, it's true).