Why is the Arc de Triomphe Covered?

JeanClaudAndChristo Lovers Monuments Paris

What is happening!?

This is historic in more ways than one, not only because it is the first time in history that this iconic landmark has been covered up, by 25,000 square meters of recyclable polypropylene fabric that is a silver-blue color, along with 3,000 meters of red rope, but also because this is the culmination of The Artists, Jean Claud and Christo’s work! #TheLovers 

1. Photo by designbloom 

Jean Claud and Christo were environmental sculptures and artists, whose work often included monumental displays of fabrics and plastics. These artists went far beyond the traditional boundaries of painting, sculpture and architecture creating monumental works that were often featured outside. Some of their most iconic works include: Wrapped Reichstag in Berlin, Wrapped Reichstag in Berlin and Wrapped Coast near Sydney.

2.‘Wrapped Reichstag’, the German parliament building covered with fabric, in Berlin

The “L’Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped” was a project started in the early 60’s by these artists. Three years after they met and began working together they had the daring idea to wrap a public building!

In 1962, after renting an apartment in Paris near the Arc, Christo created a photomontage of the Arc de Triomphe wrapped. But there was a problem: this was a highly ambitious project, and it was hard to get the permits to be able to realise this masterpiece, so the idea died there….or so we thought, because now 60 years later it has finally happened!

3. Photo by wikki commons 

It is important to note that the Eternal Flame in front of the tomb of the Unknown Soldiers at the Arc continued to burn all throughout the installation, and will continue to burn through the dismantling.

In 2009 Jean Claud died, and before her death Christo promised her that he would continue their legacy, and complete this project.After years of much work Christo is, finally, able to get the papers and permits required to start this Arc de Triomphe, wrapped, but, sadly in 2020 he died. 

This is why the fact that this masterpiece is being created all these years after its original inception is something completely astonishing, it is truly the culmination of Jean Claud and Chrisdto’s amazing work.


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1. Designbloom. sotheby’s exhibits christo's final works for 'l’arc de triomphe, wrapped' installation in paris. 
2.. The story of Germany. https://www.ft.com/content/01f2c640-878d-11e4-bc7c-00144feabdc0
3.  Peabody Awards, CC BY 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons
Christo and Jeanne-Claude Foundation, (2021). Life and Work. Retrieved from https://christojeanneclaude.net/life-and-work/
NPR, (2021). Here's Why The Arc De Triomphe Was Just Wrapped In Fabric. Retrieved from https://www.npr.org/2021/09/17/1038287275/arc-de-triomphe-christo-jeanne-claude-wrapped

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