The Arc De Triomphe wrapped : Christo’s dream comes true

Arc de Triomphe by Christo

Since yesterday September 18 and until October 3, you can admire in Paris the last temporary work of Christo and Jeanne-Claude, the Arc de Triomphe wrapped. Christo’s last gesture of love for a city where he took refuge in 1958, fleeing communist Bulgaria.

Have you already heard about Christo? Maybe you did not. But now thanks to the Arc de Triomphe, Yes ! Christo was actually a Bulgarian artist who escaped Bulgaria during the 1950’s. He first moved to Paris and then to New York after he met his wife Jeanne-Claude.

Both of them are well known as a couple of contemporary artists and especially for some works. Their art consists mainly of the « packaging » of places, buildings, monuments, parks and landscapes. For example, they « packed » the Reichstag in Germany in 1995 or the Pont Neuf in Paris in 1985.

Arc de Triomphe in Paris by Christo
Christo in his studio in New York, with a preparatory drawing for “The Arc de Triomphe empaqueté”, September 20, 2019. (© Wolfgang Volz / 2019 Fondation Christo et Jeanne-Claude.)

Apart the fact that they’re famous in the West and that Christo is Bulgarian, the main reason why we decided to write about Christo today is because from yesterday (18 September 2021) until the 3rd of October the Arc the Triomphe in Paris will be « packed ». This is one of their work (posthumously). 

The Christo and Jeanne-Claude team produced L’Arc de Triomphe wrapped, Paris (1961-2021), according to Christo’s wish, who wanted the project to continue after his death on May 31, 2020. This required 25,000 square meters of recyclable bluish silver polypropylene fabric and 3,000 meters of red cord of the same material.

A self-funded project – Like all artistic projects by Christo and Jeanne-Claude, L’Arc de Triomphe wrapped, Paris (1961-2021) will be fully self-financed thanks to the sale of original works by Christo: collages, drawings from this project and others as well as models, works from the fifties and sixties and lithographs. It will not benefit from any other public or private funding.

Another work they dreamed to realized for more than 40 years and that, maybe, his nephew, Vladimir, might realize for them is the Mastaba of Abu Dahbi whose you can see a picture below. This would be a 150-meter-high structure made up of thousands of barrels of oil in the middle of the desert. This is a project he initiated in 1977 but still could not come to life. In addition, for the first time, the work would be permanent. See more :

Some of his most famous work are Valley Curtain, Running Fence, Surrounded Islands, Pont Neuf, Parasol Bridge, Reichstag, The Gates, The Floating Piers, and now The Arc de Triomphe.

His nephew, is working with him since he (also) emigrated from Bulgaria to the U.S, 17 years ago, will be continue the work.

Madame Bulgaria is a webzine launched in June 2016 in English. Our aim is to show to the world how Bulgaria is a very nice country, full of potential. We cover all kind of topics – Lifestyle, Culture, Places, Food, People, Tourism, Beauty, Fashion, Business, Ecosystem, and More. We try to be as objective as possible. Madame Bulgaria crew works every week to offer a new, fresh and dynamic content on Bulgaria.

Alexandre Kolow

Entrepreneurship & Economics Editor

Alexander felt in love with Bulgaria when he came for the first time in 2003 to work for a French company. He believes that Bulgaria is like a rough diamond which has still not been cut.

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Madame Bulgaria is a webzine proposing attractives contents about Bulgaria. We write stories of Lifestyle, Culture, Places, Food, People, Tourism, Beauty, Fashion, Business, Ecosystem, and More.