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April 5, 2005

The Process

In an article in
Art a Go Go,
Kathleen Lang writes about the length of time it takes Christo and Jeanne-Claude to realize their art works. "Sometimes it can take years for the artists to obtain the required permits to carry out their plans. The permit process often requires extensive environmental studies, costing millions of dollars. Avoiding words like "red tape" or "bureaucracy," Christo and Jeanne-Claude simply call their quest to get a project approved as "process."

Interesting to note that this is exactly how we are proceeding with the documentation of the Gates. We are interested in the process as much as the end-result. How will the experience of the Gates be unpacked, discussed, and re-assembled by a large and diverse group of observers? To follow are a few examples.

A film documentary by Antonio Ferrera and Albert Maysles is currently in production. The filmmakers have been following the Gates project throughout its 25-year life-span. Both Leslie Camhi and Kathryn Shattuck, mention the Maysles documentary in their respective articles on February 8th.

During their brief stay, Justin Ferate, an award winning tour guide offered historical background to go with the direct experience in his walking tour of Central Park and the Gates described as follows on his website: discover the interrelationships between the billowing saffron-colored Gates and Vaux and Olmsted's magnificent Central Park. Learn of Christo's career and of his artworks around the world. Experience the tremendous transformations of Central Park and the most recent visions for its future.

There are a wealth of creative approaches to understanding the artistic value the Gates. The New Criterion published a quiz-style art review that compared Christo and Thomas Kinkade. This article was followed up by post on the blog StepNewz Christo vs. Thomas Kinkade: Reloaded

A blog called "the Sheila Variations," offers this hilarious collaborative art review, poking fun at the cliches of art criticism.

Several other blogs stage rich discussions/debates over the artistic value of the Gates. Two good examples are: The Charlie Rose Show's: Tell us what you think discussion board A river the color of saffron IS art and Republican Professor's glowing review of the Gates with contentious discussion to follow.

Posted by kim white at April 5, 2005 10:55 AM


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