Synopsis by Nathan Southern
From "wrapping" the Berlin Reichstag to transforming South Seas islands into massive pink water lilies to hanging drapes between the Colorado mountains, Christo qualifies as one of the most dynamic, innovative, and ambitious conceptual artists in modern history. Documentarians Albert and David Maysles have a long-running professional association with Christo (having co-directed such pictures as Christo's Valley Curtain and Christo's Islands); now, with their film The Gates, Albert Maysles and co-director Antonio Ferrera cover Christo and wife Jeanne-Claude's 26-year project to create a "golden river" of 7,500 fabric-paneled "gates" running through Central Park in February 2005. The endeavor began in 1979, but didn't overcome the necessary bureaucratic hurtles for 26 years, and only received a final go-ahead with a green light from New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg. The film reveals how Christo and Jeanne-Claude's 21-million-dollar project transforms the environment from one of winter bleakness to one of brisk, vibrant, and springlike colors. Though David Maysles (brother of Albert) did die in 1987, he received posthumous credit on this film for a sequence that the siblings co-directed in 1979.
art, installation-art, park