JF Ptak Science Books Post 1160
The monumentality of the works of Christo and Jeanne-Claude is beyond doubt interesting for at least their fantastic visual impact--the philosophical impact and the statement of the work, the 'revelation through concealment", on the other hand, is completely unappetizing. Generally I'm perfectly fine to see the works come and go, and, after a time, mostly the "go" part remains. It is appropriate that there is no permanent full-scale representative of their work. Cloud writers.
In continuing a series on this blog on the artistic representation of comparative data I found an image that rivals the work of the two/one wrapping artists--the entombment of St. Paul's Cathedral (London) with 2.5 million tons of masonry.
The very striking image (from The Illustrated London News for 16 October 1909, page 545) was created to relate the massiveness of the newly-opened Admiralty Harbor (Dover) in 1909. The harbor was a remarkable creation, enclosing more area of open sea than had ever been done before--as we can see, the created harbor was bigger than Hyde Park). The artist, W.B. Robinson, gets the point of its size across very effectively with his six images--none more so than the St. Paul's comparison. Its true that the "tomb" is open on two sides, but the monoliths could have easily been made half of their width (each being 72.5 feet thick, by 400 feet long, by 600 feet high) so that they could've completely encapsulated the building. (Its an interesting thought--to build something beautiful and enormous, and then completely encase the thing in an enormous block that revealed nothing of its contents. Like place the pyramids in a cube.)
Another remarkable image from this same series is the depiction of the weight of the harbor--a very tempting title for this post ("The Weight of a Harbor") but the Christo one won out.