Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Environmental Art

"Utopianism, nerve, luck,
grass roots organization, horse trading
and lawlessness."
These are just a few words that describe
the efforts surrounding the installation
of The Running Fence, one of the few successful
and popular works of American Enviromental art,
"The tenacity of  Christo and Jeanne-Claude
and their unshakable faith in
their unusual ideas earned respect,
trust and affection from people who had never
heard of site specific art".
This was no easy feat,
 ( even today, it would be a challenge)
between skeptical landowners, government
bureaucracies and just about everyone with an
opinion in between, they worked through and
overcame great hostility.
Of all their works, this was their most ambitious-
the 18-foot high white nylon fence
ran 24 miles accross two rolling
Northern California counties
and into the Pacific Ocean.

The project will forever have a
lasting impact on the mostly rural
community and it's surrounding cities.
I truly believe, after all was said and done
the locals feel a huge sense of pride and respect
 having been involved
with a brilliant, passionate and true visionary.

There is a wonderful exhibition
at the Smithsonian this summer-
"Christo and Jeanne-Claude
Remembering The Running Fence".
It is a large retrospective
involving nearly 50 drawings,
a 58 -foot-long scale model,
250 photographs by Wolfgang Volz
and continuous screenings of the
1978 film "Running Fence" by
Albert and David Maysles as well as
the brand new film,
"'The Running Fence' Revisited"
by Wolfram Hissen.

 I would love to make to the exhibit
(through September 26)
 but if not, I will
definitely be there in spirit.

With assist from photos, and "WSJ"