Christo’s vision for L’Arc de Triomphe finally unveiled 16 months after his death

The artist and his partner Jeanne-Claude conceived of the installation 60 years ago

Workers in Paris have successfully completed a top-to-toe swaddling of the 50-metre Arc de Triomphe, decades after it was first imagined by the late artist Christo and his collaborator-wife Jeanne-Claude, who died in 2009.

The artist formerly known as Christo Vladimirov Javacheff, who died in May 2020, left behind detailed drawings to guarantee the successful installation of his first posthumous work, which was officially approved by the city before his death. He appointed his nephew, Vladimir Yavachev, to oversee the ‘wrap’.

The icy-blue fabric – all 25,000 square metres of it – was draped over a scaffold by abseilers and fastened by a series of red cords. The feat took two days.

L’Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped‘ will officially open on 18 September and remain for two weeks before being dismantled. A concurrent exhibit at Sotheby’s in Paris titled The Final Christo will auction off the artists’ original plans, photos and architectural plans for the event.

In 1985 Christo and Jeanne-Claude wrapped Paris’s Pont Neuf in golden fabric.

Photography: Wolfgang Volz, © 2021 Christo and Jeanne-Claude Foundation
Photography: Matthias Koddenberg, © 2021 Christo and Jeanne-Claude Foundation
Photography: Wolfgang Volz, © 2021 Christo and Jeanne-Claude Foundation
Property of the Estate of Christo V. Javacheff. Photo André Grossmann, © 2020 Christo and Jeanne-Claude Foundation
Property of the Estate of Christo V. Javacheff. Photo André Grossmann, © 2019 Christo and Jeanne-Claude Foundation

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