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London’s Hyde Park gets a floating Egyptian tomb sculpture

A 20-metre floating installation made by Bulgarian artist Christo using 7,506 red, white and mauve barrels, has taken temporary residence on a lake in London’s Hyde Park.

art and culture Updated: Jun 19, 2018 10:24 IST
Bulgarian artist Christo Vladimirov Javacheff, better known as Christo, poses for a photograph as he unveils his artwork, The Mastaba on the Serpentine lake in Hyde Park in London.(AFP)

A 20-metre (22-yard) high sculpture of an ancient Egyptian tomb, made from 7,506 red, white and mauve barrels, has taken temporary residence amid the aquatic wildlife on a lake in London’s Hyde Park. The floating installation — featuring two vertical sides, two slanted sides and a flat top — was unveiled on Monday by Bulgarian-born artist Christo.

“For three months, The London Mastaba will be a part of Hyde Park’s environment in the centre of London,” he said. “The colours will transform with the changes in light, and the reflection on the Serpentine Lake will be like an abstract painting.”

A swan and cygnets paddle in front of Christo's work The London Mastaba. (REUTERS)

Work started in April to stack the 55-gallon barrels into their cut-off pyramid shape on a floating platform 40 metres long and 30 metres wide. Thirty-two anchors hold the structure in place. Christo, whose full name is Christo Javacheff, was joined at the launch by former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, chairman of the Serpentine Galleries.

Christo and his wife Jeanne-Claude, who died in 2009, are known for such works as The Gates, a 2005 installation in New York’s Central Park, and the wrapping of the Reichstag in Berlin in 1995.

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First Published: Jun 19, 2018 10:23 IST