Though not universally loved, "The Gates" by Christo and Jeanne-Claude drew large crowds during its opening weekend, its bright saffron-colored fabric alternatingly resembling flames through the trees, a sliver of sunlight and a river of gold undulating along 23 miles of Central Park.

In writing to a friend, I described them as such:

It was a once-in-a-lifetime event — creating a beautiful, resplendent current of life and light as unique and spectacular as the park itself, at once eternal and transient.

I was one of those people who couldn't stop smiling — it was pure joy!

... experiencing it was truly like the essence of love.

I also loved what the Times wrote:

Thousands of swaths of pleated nylon were unfurled to bob and billow in the breeze. In the winter light, the bright fabric seemed to warm the fields, flickering like a flame against the barren trees. Even at first blush, it was clear that "The Gates" is a work of pure joy, a vast populist spectacle of good will and simple eloquence, the first great public art event of the 21st century. It remains on view for just 16 days. Consider yourself forewarned. Time is fleeting.

... The shifting light couldn't have been better to show off the effects of the cloth. Sometimes the fabric looked deep orange; at other times it was shiny, like gold leaf, or silvery or almost tan. In the breeze, the skirted gates also appeared to shimmy like dancers in a conga line, the cloth buckling and swaying.

The photos at a "Gates"-specific blog were quite nice and included the following quote:

"A great object of all that is done in a park, of all the art of a park, is to influence the minds of men through their imaginations." — Frederick Law Olmstead,Central Park architect


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