Saturday, September 17, 2005

Hurricane Victims Should Be Inundated With Culture As Well As Compassion

Bulgarian artist Cristo Javacheff: "Now, more than ever, these people need remedial art appreciation classes."

"Environmental artists" Christo Javacheff and Jean-Claude Denat de Guillebon (who, together, are commonly referred to as Christo), are offering a donation to the victims of hurricane Katrina in the form of one of their world famous "installation art" projects.

The artists, whose past projects include Wrapped Reichstag and The Gates, have submitted to authorities plans and drawings for the proposed work, tentatively entitled Stagnancy of Compassion, which comprises an enormous body of water, estimated to be nearly the size of the city of New Orleans. The drawings show what appear to be the tops of houses, trees, street signs and telephone poles protruding from the water.

In an unexpected departure from Cristo's minimalist style, the work features several different "attractions", each with its own theme, including School Bus Pool; a parcel of land lined with over 200 school buses in 2-3 feet of standing water, and Compost-Dome; a massive enclosed structure capable of seating 70,000 people, where "participants" can observe several tons of decaying garbage the artists say say will eventually be donated to "Some kind of charity that distributes mulch to poor people."

Javacheff and Denat de Guillebon say that most of the materials they will need can be readily obtained at no cost at the as-yet-undisclosed location, however, this project will be unusually labor-intensive.

"We will need to reverse the direction of several massive water pumps," said Denat de Guillebon, "And we will require the services of a helicopter crew to remove a large number of very heavy sandbags."

When asked to explain the significance of the proposed work, a scowling Javacheff asked, "Why should I waste my time explaining this to someone who probably doesn't even know the difference between wrapping and surrounding?"

Filed by John from and Cross-Posted at WuzzaDem

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