Christo and Jean-Claude – objects, drawings, collages

01/28/2017 – 06/18/2017

The exhibition in the messmer art gallery uses around 100 exhibits – including drawings, collages, objects, graphics and photos – to present the artistic development of the exceptional artists towards increasingly technically sophisticated and demanding works. It shows all the important creative periods, illustrates and documents the working method and spans a wide arc – starting with the early works, to world-famous projects such as the “Surrounded Islands”, the Pont Neuf, the “Umbrellas” in Japan and California, and the wrapped Reichstag in Berlin or the “Gates” in New York.

Christo and Jeanne-Claude – two names that are immediately and inextricably linked in our memory with an unmistakable work! The world-renowned American artist, born in Gabrovo, Bulgaria, in 1935, continues to fascinate people with his spectacular art projects, which are carried out with enormous effort, in which he always turns wonderfully crazy ideas into reality with a lot of charm, wit and a sharp analytical mind. The unique and formative art experiences, mostly presented in the open air, remain anchored in the collective art memory of an entire society for decades.

The artist couple finances their projects themselves and allows visitors to take part in them free of charge. The temporary works of art, which can only be admired for a few days or weeks, live on through drawings, photos, collages and editions and are thus preserved beyond the duration of the actual project.

At the beginning of his career, Christo primarily tied everyday objects with string, paper, fabric and adhesive tape – his critical response to the iconic exaggeration of commercial goods propagated by Pop Art artists and to our society’s packaging aesthetics, which are increasingly striving for perfection. However, it would be too one-dimensional to reduce his works to pure consumer criticism. Rather, they are experiments and games with the aesthetics of a veiled object, a building or parts of a landscape that is temporarily hidden from the viewer’s view, but whose outlines are always recognizable and thus remain a memory of itself.