World-renowned artist duo Christo Javacheff and his wife Jeanne-Claude are known for their large-scale sculptures that typically utilize the technique of draping or wrapping large portions of existing landscapes with fabric to draw attention to their formal, conceptual, and volumetric qualities. Both born on the same day in 1935—Christo in Gabrovo, Bulgaria and Jeanne-Claude in Morocco to French parents—they began to envision conceptual projects and exhibit them in Europe. In 1964, they started working in New York and settled there for good. Before the duo began to use the technique of wrapping large portions of the natural environment, they created many sculptures by wrapping everyday objects such as furniture and household items. By exploring the transformative effects of fabric, they challenge viewers to re-examine the object’s initial meaning.
Christo (1935-2020) and Jeanne-Claude (1935-2009) receive the Vilcek Prize in Fine Arts for capturing the imagination of the world and broadening the popular conception of art with their large-scale works.
Decades of monumental, often whimsical, projects earned the Bulgarian-born artist Christo and his Moroccan-born partner, Jeanne-Claude, the inaugural Vilcek Prize and a lasting place in the hearts of art lovers the world over.