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Christo and Jeanne Claude, the Mastaba, Project for Abu Dhabi

ISBN: 9783836542098 | 3836542099
Edition: Bilingual
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Taschen America Llc
Pub. Date: 11/15/2012

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The most grandiose art project of all timeConceived in 1977 and currently a work in progress, Christo and Jeanne-Claude's Mastaba will be the largest sculpture in the world as well as their only permanent large-scale work. The Mastaba, an ancient and familiar shape to the people of the region, will be made from 410,000 multi-colored barrels to form a mosaic of bright sparkling colors, echoing Islamic architecture. The structure-to be constructed in Al Gharabia, about 160 kilometers south of Abu Dhabi-will be 150 meters (492 feet) high, 225 meters (738 feet) deep at the 60 degree slanted walls and 300 meters (984 feet) wide at the vertical walls. The top of The Mastaba will be a horizontal surface 126.8 meters (416 feet) wide and 225 meters (738 feet) deep. The colors and the positioning of the 55-gallon steel barrels were selected by Christo and Jeanne-Claude in 1979, the year in which the artists visited the Emirate for the first time. They returned many times in the following years, creating a longstanding friendship with the people of Abu Dhabi, but only recently has their project become technically feasible. In 2007 and 2008, Christo and Jeanne-Claude contracted professors of engineering from four different universities worldwide to prepare structural feasibility studies about The Mastaba. After consulting with an engineering firm to compare the plans, they chose the proposal of Hosei University in Japan designating that the entire substructure as well as the layer of barrels be assembled flat on the ground. Ten elevation towers will make it possible to raise the entire structure on rails to its final position in about 3 to 4 days. When complete, the Mastaba will be not only the artists' greatest achievement, but one of the most significant large-scale creations in the history of mankind.


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