Christo and Jeanne-Claude: The 50th Anniversary of “Valley Curtain” and the Artists’ Legacy

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Although it only lasted a mere 28 hours in the winds of the Grand Hogback Mountain Range in 1972, Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s masterwork “Valley Curtain” sent ripples through the art world and continues to influence artists and art critics today. The 4½-acre curtain of orange fabric hanging across a Colorado highway took a team of more than 100 engineers, construction workers, and volunteers 28 months to plan and erect, to the delight of local residents, visitors and the art world alike. The dichotomy of its immense scale and brief existence enthralls people to this day. Join us to discuss the “Valley Curtain” project: its conception, development and construction, and the five-decade legacy this formative work and other public installations of Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s. Hear from a panel of their colleagues with James Baker as moderator: Jonathan Henery, Christo’s nephew involved in the daily workings of Christo and Jeanne-Claude and who now manages the couple’s studio and home in New York City and runs The Christo and Jeanne-Claude Foundation; Dan Telleen, Vail resident and local businessman who, as a student at SummerVail at the time, traveled to Rifle and helped with the Valley Curtain installation; Wolfgang Volz, assistant photographer of the Valley Curtain project. Later becoming the exclusive photographer for Christo and Jeanne-Claude, as well as one of the world’s premier landscape photographers who worked with Christo and Jeanne-Claude since 1971; Vladimir Yavachev, Christo’s nephew who worked alongside him and Jeann-Claude from the age of 17, to help bring their work to life. After Christo’s and Jeanne-Claude’s passings, he recently oversaw the installation of their unfinished work “L’Arc De Triomphe” and is currently working on “The Mastaba” project, a permanent installation in UAE and David Yust, Professor Emeritus of Colorado State University and world-renowned artist who was a friend and involved in numerous projects of Christo and Jeanne-Claude.

Production Date: 
Tuesday, August 9, 2022

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