Thursday, November 19, 2009

Behind Every Man


I was poking around the Time website, looking for a picture to include in a blog post on a different subject, when I learned that Jeanne-Claude, Christo's partner in life and art, passed away yesterday.

I first saw the work of Christo and Jeanne-Claude on "Sunday Morning", which chronicled them and their Umbrellas installation. When people talk about these Umbrellas, or about the Reichstag, or the New York Gates, they talk about Christo. But he had another half.

I'm not going to get all feminist on you. If, by reading this blog post, one more person will know Jean-Claude's name, I will be exceedingly happy.

An artist-friend was recently lamenting to me how art is not purposeful. But it is. The sublime is necessary. I am reminded of a comment made in one of my fiction workshops at Maryland, shortly after 9/11. My workshop mate said of fiction, and art, "In some ways, it doesn't seem to matter very much right now. In another way, it's the only thing that matters."

Thanks, Jeanne-Claude, for things that matter.

1 comment:

Kathryn Law said...

I agree with your workshop mate. In the grand scheme of things, the arts are possibly the only thing that really matters. Certainly the only thing that truly endures. Thank you for this tribute to Jeanne-Claude. From what I have read, Christo always wanted her to get the recognition she deserved, and ultimately became adamant that her name be included with his as author of the work. What a huge loss this is to the art world.