Telluride Gallery of Fine Art artist, Christo: Over the River Project

Telluride Gallery of Fine Art artist, Christo: Over the River Project

Image 1 - OTR Editor’s note: Christo is the granddady of all wrappers. He and his wife Jeanne-Claude (now deceased) became world famous for hiding familiar objects, buildings and views in plain sight by wrapping whatever struck their fantasies in what amounts to a second skin. The big idea: transform the quotidian into something transcendent, stimulate our imaginations and the joy of discovery, causing us to take a second look at that which we tend to take for granted.

The Telluride Gallery of Fine Art is Christo’s local representative. The Gallery will be mounting a show of his work to coincide with the Telluride Film Festival, September 3 – September 6. The Gallery show is in support of Christo’s latest project, Over The River. Telluride Inside… and Out heard Christo speak on behalf of Over the River at a town hall meeting in Salida. The consensus appeared to tilt overwhelmingly in his favor, although there was the equivalent of a Tea Party opposition, fingers stuck in their ears, generally opposed no matter what. The Christo team has recently opened up the debate to the general public. The Christo team has sent the following release, so read on….

Comment Period Underway for Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s Over The River

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) recently began accepting public comments on Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s proposed temporary work of art, Over The River. Christo has proposed suspending 5.9 total miles of silvery, luminous fabric panels high above the Arkansas River along a 40-mile stretch between Salida and Cañon City in central Colorado. If approved, the project would be displayed for two weeks in 2013, at the earliest.

Along with his late wife Jeanne-Claude, Christo has spent more than 40 years creating highly celebrated temporary works of art around the world, including The Gates in New York City’s Central Park, Wrapped Reichstag in Berlin, and Running Fence in California’s Marin and Sonoma Counties. Over The River will be an incredible cultural and historical event for Colorado, and it will also have substantial economic benefits for the state. The Draft EIS estimates that the project will generate $121 million in economic activity, with all costs being covered by the artist.

The BLM recently published the Over The River Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) as part of the permitting process. The document contains a comprehensive analysis of the project’s potential impacts and benefits, as well as possible mitigation measures. It is critically important that those who support Over The River submit their comments to the BLM during the 45-day public comment period, which runs from July 16 through August 30, 2010.

You can email comments to or fill out a comment form online by clicking here. The Over The River project team has also drafted a list of suggested topics to consider when you write your comment. The BLM will also accept written and oral comments at four public meetings on August 9-12. For more information, go to

Photo: Wolfgang Volz, © Christo 2008

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