Here's Why The Arc De Triomphe Was Just Wrapped In Fabric

17September 2021

gettyimages 1235297080 wide 120d54f93945a7c9e563b8182fc1fa5e01c3b960 s1100 c50

The Arc de Triomphe in Paris is seen wrapped in fabric, in a posthumous art project that is an homage to the late artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude .

Julien Mattia/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Julien Mattia/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The Arc de Triomphe — the star attraction in the Place de l’Étoile in Paris — is shrouded in fabric today, as a tribute to the late artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude.

It is “a sensual, popular and monumental gesture,” according to Carine Rolland, the deputy mayor of Paris in charge of culture.

While the official English name for the project is L’Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped, the French call it L’Arc de Triomphe Empaqueté — using the word for “packaged.”

Preparations for the temporary installation took about three months. But a time-lapse video shows that the installation’s fabric was unfurled from the top and guided to the bottom of one side of the monument in a single day.

The massive monument is now covered in 25,000 square meters of recyclable polypropylene fabric that is a silver-blue color, along with 3,000 meters of red rope. The installation will remain in place for 16 days, officially running from Sept. 18 to Oct. 3.

“No tickets are needed to see, approach, and touch the work of art,” the project website states, adding that “Place de l’Étoile will be closed to vehicular traffic on the weekend for pedestrians to enjoy the work of art.”

There is one caveat for anyone hoping to take splashy photos to post on social media: selfie sticks are forbidden in the pedestrian area and the monument. Coronavirus precautions also apply.

gettyimages 1339829767 wide c2ca47f10d36150824053a930cfc2fc2adfa2bc7 s1100 c50

Spectators and journalists watch as workers start the process of wrapping the Arc De Triomphe monument in Paris on Sept. 12.

Siegfried Modola/Getty Images

Siegfried Modola/Getty Images

The project was 60 years in the making. Christo and Jeanne-Claude began transforming public spaces into their now-famous works of art in 1961, according to the artists’ website. Soon afterward, Christo, who became fascinated by the Arc de Triomphe when he lived near the monument, produced a photomontage showing what it might look like wrapped up. Now, the site states, “the project will finally be concretized.”

arc de triomphe work christo wide 930d137dcdf5f876dc25fcfed7e7b36b31e01d89 s1100 c50

Workers unravel a silvery blue fabric during the wrapping of the L’Arc de Triomphe in Paris, in a posthumous installation by the artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude. The couple had dreamed of the project for decades.

Thomas Samson/AFP via Getty Images

Thomas Samson/AFP via Getty Images

Christo Vladimirov Javacheff and Jeanne-Claude Denat de Guillebon met in Paris in 1958, starting a relationship that led to marriage and one of the world’s most famous artistic collaborations. Jeanne-Claude died in 2009; before Christo died in 2020, he asked that the Arc de Triomphe project be completed posthumously.

The project was not as simple as simply closing a large set of drapes. Before the massive curtains could be installed, a small army of climbers and other workers installed scaffolding and brackets around the top of the Arc de Triomphe and parts of its pillars, to protect sculptures and decorative carvings. The brackets also help the material hang uniformly.

If you’re curious how the monument looks right now, the artists’ website highlights a camera that’s trained on the Arc around the clock — the video is livestreaming on YouTube.

The French luminaries who unveiled the art installation on Thursday included Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo and French President Emmanuel Macron. The two appeared alongside each other less than a week after Hidalgo announced she will challenge Macron in next year’s presidential election.

“In Paris, Christo and Jeanne-Claude dreamed of packaging the @ArcDeTriomphe,” Hidalgo said via Twitter. She thanked the teams who brought that dream to life — as well as “this couple whose works will remain among the most outstanding of our era.”

gettyimages 1235295254 custom d3e7fc55d5bdd8d296bb546e85a36537f375d358 s1100 c50

Rope access technicians look on during the inauguration of the Arc de Triomphe art installation in Paris, as the monument was wrapped in fabric as it was designed by the late artist Christo.

Ludovic Marin/AFP via Getty Images

Ludovic Marin/AFP via Getty Images

This post was originally published on this site

This post was originally published on this site

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

See Your Business Here!

For more information on our listings, advertising, coupons, and mailers, please contact us today!

Business Owners, Get Your 15 Day FREE Trial Here

And start getting more 5 Star reviews this Week!