Christo Bulgarian / American, 1935-2020

As collaborative artists, Christo and Jeanne-Claude were renowned for their large-scale environmental works in locations around the worldincluding famously, Valley Curtain, Rifle, Colorado (1972), Surrounded Islands (1983) Miami, Wrapped Reichstag, Berlin (1995), The Gates, Central Park, New York (2005), The Floating Piers, Lago D’Iseo, Italy (2016), and London Mastaba, London (2018). Their realized projects are recognised as monumental feats of creativity, many having taken years and even decades of obtaining permissions, planning and organisation. As a matter of principle, to ensure creative and ethical freedom, Christo and Jeanne-Claude independently financed all of their environmental projects entirely through the sale of their drawings, mixed media works and models.  Jeanne-Claude died in 2009 at the age of 74 but Christo continued to pursue the development of projects they created together with vigour. Indeed, in September 2020 an ambitious project to wrap L’Arc de Triomphe in Paris they first conceived of together in 1962 was finally to be realised.  However, the global coronavirus pandemic impacted on these plans and the project is now scheduled for September 2021, some 59 years after its conception. Sadly, Christo died at home in New York in May 2020 at the age of 84 but the project ‘L’ Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped’ will go ahead as he and Jeanne-Claude intended.

 

Christo (Christo Vladimirov Javacheff) was born 13 June 1935 in Gabrovo, Bulgaria and Jeanne-Claude (Jeanne-Claude Marie Denat-de Guillebon) was born on the very same day in Casablanca, Morocco.  After studying at the Fine Arts Academy in Sofia, Christo fled Bulgaria in 1958 and settled in Paris where he met Jeanne-Claude who became his wife and artistic partner.  In 1961 Christo and Jeanne-Claude created Stacked Oil Barrels and Dockside Packages at Cologne harbour which was their first realised collaboration. They continued to work together under the name ‘Christo’ until 1991 when they then began titling their projects as ‘Christo & Jeanne-Claude’. They moved from Paris and settled permanently in New York in 1964.

 

Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s works are represented extensively in major museum and public collections worldwide, including MoMA, the Guggenheim Museum and the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the Tate Gallery in London and the Centre Pompidou in Paris.


Annely Juda Fine Art is proud to have worked closely with Christo and Jeanne-Claude for nearly five decades and has held 12 exhibitions of their work, from Projects Not Realized in 1971, to Christo and Jeanne-Claude 40 Years – 12 Exhibitions in 2011.