A huge wrapping of plastic sheeting has transformed the ancient Aurelian walls of Rome into an object of modern art -- at least in the eyes of Christo Javacheff, the bulgarian-born artist responsible.
A huge wrapping of plastic sheeting has transformed the ancient Aurelian walls of Rome into an object of modern art -- at least in the eyes of Christo Javacheff, the bulgarian-born artist responsible. Under his direction, thousands of yards (metres) of plastic were thrown over a large section of the stonework, obscuring all but a carved facade. A team of workmen and a mobile crane were employed for four days on the project, finishing on Sunday (27 January).
Christo's wrapping activities have brought him a controversial reputation in the art world, not least because of the expense his "sculpture" involves. In 1969 he graduated from wrapping buildings and epic monuments to covering a mile of craggy Australian coastline in plastic. Students of his work consider this was Christo's "ultimate statement". The cost was GBP 54,000 (118,000 dollars U.S.).
Two years later Christo hung a GBP 100,000 (220,000 dollars U.S.). curtain across a canyon in Colorado, U.S.A. The following day it blew down.
The brief existence of many of his "Sculptures" does not perturb Christo, who explains his work as "concealing an object in a most realistic way". The wrapping, he says, "calls attention to the nature of the object through its metamorphosis".