Artist biography

Christo born 1935

Artist preoccupied with packaging, sometimes on a vast environmental scale. Born in Gabrovo, Bulgaria, full name Christo Javacheff. Studied at the Fine Arts Academy in Sofia 1952-6 and began as a social realist painter. Studied stage design in Prague in 1956 then fled to Vienna, where he studied sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts under Wotruba. Afterwards moved to Geneva and in 1958 to Paris. Met Pierre Restany, Arman and Spoerri and made his first wrapped objects and his first walls of oil drums. First one-man exhibition at the Galerie Haro Lauhus, Cologne, 1965. Moved to New York in 1964 and began soon afterwards to make full-scale store fronts, with the windows screened off inside. His interest in carrying out his ideas on a huge scale led to the creation of air packages (notably a sausage-shaped balloon for the Documenta 4 exhibition at Kassel 1968); the actual wrapping up of buildings (the Kunsthalle, Bern, in 1968 and the Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art in 1969); the packaging of a mile of coastline near Sydney, Australia, 1969; the Valley Curtain for Colorado 1972; and the Running Fence for California 1976. Lives in New York.

Published in:
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, p.122