Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do Christo and Jeanne-Claude find inspiration for their work?

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    All of Christo and Jeanne-Claude's projects come from ideas from their two hearts, and two brains. The artists never create works that come from other people's ideas. Never. Christo and Jeanne-Claude have completed about 20 projects and twice as much have not succeeded. The artists could not get permission to create those projects, and the artists lost interest.

    Some projects took many years of refusals until the artists could complete the project: 32 years for Wrapped Trees (1966-98), 26 years for The Gates (1971-2005), 25 years for the Wrapped Reichstag (1971-95), 10 years for The Pont Neuf Wrapped (1975-85), 5 years for Running Fence (1972-76), etc.

  • How are sites chosen?

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    There are two different ways for choosing a site. In one scenario, the artists have a specific building, structure or location in mind – such as the Pont-Neuf in Paris or the Reichstag in Berlin. In a second scenario, the artists have an idea for a project, but do not know where it will be physically located.

    A good example of this scenario is in the project, for Over The River, Project for the Arkansas River, State of Colorado. In this case, Christo and Jeanne-Claude knew fabric would be suspended over a river, but they did not know which river would work best. Early renditions of what the artists envisioned were created by Christo in the form of drawings and collages that use an imaginary landscape. They drove 14,000 miles in the Rocky Mountains and inspected 89 rivers in search of the river that would provide all the characteristics they were looking for. After all of this research, they decided that the Arkansas River in the state of Colorado best fit the needs for the project.

    The River (Project)
    Christo
    The River (Project)
    Drawing 1992
    11 x 14" (28 x 35.5 cm)
    Pencil, charcoal, wax crayon, ballpoint pen and cardboard
    Photo: André Grossmann
    © 1992 Christo
    The River (Project)
    Christo
    The River (Project)
    Drawing 1992
    11 x 14" (28 x 35.5 cm)
    Pencil, charcoal, pastel, wax crayon and cardboard
    Photo: André Grossmann
    © 1992 Christo
  • Who pays for the installations?

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    Christo and Jeanne-Claude pay the entire cost of the artworks themselves. They earn all of the money through the sale of Christo's preparatory studies and early works from the 50's and 60's. They do not accept grants or sponsorships of any kind. They do not accept donated labor (volunteer help). They do not accept money for things like posters, postcards, books, films, T-shirts and mugs or any other products at all. None.

    Art collectors who are interested in acquiring original preparatory works of art may contact webmaster Jok Church by e-mail. Christo and Jeanne-Claude have always acted as their own art dealers and Christo continues to present original preparatory work to collectors in his studio, by appointment. All of the money for projects come from these art sales.

  • Why don't they accept licensing deals and use that money on the installations?

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    Christo and Jeanne-Claude firmly believe that to accept deals of this kind would alter and compromise their art. Refusing this money assures them they are working in total freedom.

  • How can I work on one of the projects?

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    The jobs link is currently not available. Please check this site periodically. When we begin hiring for Over The River, employee information will be posted here and on the official site for the project, located at overtheriverinfo.com.

  • Why are their works so big? What's the point?

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    Christo and Jeanne-Claude's works are entire environments, whether they are urban or rural. The artists temporarily use one part of the environment. In doing so, we see and perceive the whole environment with new eyes and a new consciousness. The effect lasts longer than the actual work of art. Years after every physical trace has been removed and the materials recycled, original visitors can still see and feel them in their minds when they return to the sites of the artworks.

  • Why wrapping? Why fabric?

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    When Christo began to wrap objects in 1958, he used everyday objects such as shoes, telephones and empty paint cans to make his sculptures. Once wrapped, the objects would take on a new identity. By wrapping them, he would reveal some of the most basic features and proportions of the object by concealing the actual item. Christo and Jeanne-Claude later expanded this idea in projects such as The Pont Neuf Wrapped and the Wrapped Reichstag, but on a much larger scale. While the intricate details of the structures are hidden, the essence of the structures are revealed all the while making the imposing and solid structure seem airy and nomadic.

    The use of real fabric also gives the work a fragile, sensual and temporary character while wrapping objects is definitely an important part of their œuvre, Christo and Jeanne-Claude have done very few wrappings in comparison to their whole portfolio of artworks. It is easier for some to grasp the wrapping concept and refer to their artworks entirely as "wrapping," but the work is more about altering an environment than wrapping – which is only one way to do that. The last time the artists had an idea for a wrapping was in 1975, when they had the idea of wrapping the Pont-Neuf in Paris, ten years before they realized the work of art.

  • How can I send Christo a proposal for a new piece of art?

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    You cannot. Christo and Jeanne-Claude have never accepted a proposal for a work of art. They feel strongly that to do so would make the project someone else's art. Christo and Jeanne-Claude have always said that the one way to make sure a specific project does not happen is to propose it to them. The choice of what to do is central to any artist's work. If Christo and Jeanne-Claude accepted proposals or commissions, they would soon become contractors and not creative artists.

  • What films have been made about the work of Christo and Jeanne-Claude and where can I get them?

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    A complete list of films about the works of Christo and Jeanne-Claude can be found by clicking here. Christo derives no income from the sale of the films. That said, we'd like to make this information available for those of you who would like the films for home or classroom use. To acquire films, please contact the filmmakers directly.

    Blackwood Productions
    michaelblackwoodproductions.com
    blackwoodfilm@aol.com

    estWest Films
    estwestfilms.com
    info@estwestfilms.com

    Ferrera Films
    antonioferrera@gmail.com

    Maysles Films
    mayslesfilms.com
    info@mayslesfilms.com

    Plexifilm
    plexifilm.com
    info@plexifilm.com

  • Where can I buy photographs, lithographs, or posters of works by Christo and Jeanne-Claude?

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    Christo only sells one-of-a-kind originals. To purchase posters or limited edition prints, collages, three-dimensional objects and photographs, please use the following contacts:

    For posters:

    Art Edition-Fils
    www.edition-fils.de
    art@edition-fils.de

    Nurture New York's Nature
    40yearsofpublicart.org
    artprints@nnyn.org

    For limited edition photographs:

    Wolfgang Volz
    wolfgangvolz.com
    wo.volz@gmail.com

    For limited edition prints, collages and three-dimensional objects:

    Edition Domberger
    www.domberger.de
    info@domberger.de

    Galerie Breckner GmbH
    www.galerie-breckner.de
    info@galerie-breckner.de

    Landfall Press
    landfallpress.com
    info@landfallpress.com

    Polígrafa Obra Gráfica
    poligrafa.net
    info@poligrafa.net

    Schellmann Art
    schellmannart.com
    munich@schellmannart.com

    For more information about Christo and Jeanne-Claude's limited editions, please consult the official Catalogue Raisonné, published in 2013:

    Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Prints and Objects 1963-2013
    Edited by Jörg Schellmann. Text by Matthias Koddenberg. Hatje Cantz, Ostfildern, Germany. Distributed in the USA by Overlook Press, New York.