Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

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11 / The Urban Experience

The Gates, Project for Central Park, New York
The Gates, Project for Central Park, New York
Artist / Origin Christo (American, Bulgarian-born, b. 1935) and Jeanne-Claude (American, French-born, 1935-2009)
Region: North America
Date 1979–2005
Material Vinyl poles, nylon fabric, and metal bases
Dimensions H: 16 ft. (4.8 m.) (each gate)
Location New York, NY (temporary installation)
Credit © Alan Schein Photography/CORBIS

expert perspective

Anne PasternakPresident and Artistic Director, Creative Time

The Gates, Project for Central Park, New York

» Christo (American, Bulgarian-born, b. 1935) and Jeanne-Claude (American, French-born, 1935-2009)

expert perspective

Anne Pasternak Anne Pasternak President and Artistic Director, Creative Time

Projects like Christo’s Gates in Central Park are great examples of temporary works that have a lasting impression on our memories. Even people who don’t get to see them somehow feel like they know them. And there’s something about their scale that captures a lot of media attention so some people know about them around the world. Christo’s Gates brought millions of people to Central Park in February when normally only maybe tens of thousands of people at the most were going to Central Park and helped boost the local economy and that’s the reason why Mayor Michael Bloomberg in New York City loves big public art projects. It really helps to boost the local economy. Anytime you went into a restaurant, everybody was talking about it. Every time you went into a taxi, the first thing your taxi driver said to you, ‘Have you seen the Gates? What do you think of the Gates?’ Everybody was talking to everybody. I’d never experienced anything like that in New York City before. Public art is about bringing people together and to share our commonalities and to remind us that we are, in fact, all connected.” 

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