Passage: Remembering Christo

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The artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude participate in opening "The Gates" project in New York City's Central Park, Saturday Feb. 12, 2005. 

AP Photo/Richard Drew

It happened this past week ... the loss of an artist who was truly all wrapped up in his work. Christo died Sunday of an undisclosed cause in New York City, his home for more than half a century.

A Cold War refugee from Communist Bulgaria, Christo went by his first name alone.

With his wife and artistic partner Jeanne-Claude, he created a series of massive and eye-catching projects, including (but hardly limited to) matching umbrella displays in California and Japan ...

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"Surrounded Islands" in Florida's Biscayne Bay ...

Works of Artist Christo
Christo's "Surrounded Islands" take on the appearance of giant Lilly pads as the 3.1 million dollar art project in Biscayne Bay in Miami, May 7, 1983. The skyline of downtown Miami is in the background. Pete Wright/AP

A gift-wrapped Le Pont Neuf bridge in Paris ...

Pont-Neuf Bridge
The Pont-Neuf, oldest bridge in Paris, is illuminated by street lights in 1985 after being wrapped in 40,000 square meters of sandstone colored shiny nylon cloth by American artist Christo. The bridge remained open to vehicle and pedestrian traffic for the two weeks it was wrapped in September early October. Herve Merliac/AP

The enormous Reichstag building wrapped up in Berlin that "Sunday Morning" witnessed in 1995: "Wrapping up the Reichstag is really like building a building," he told correspondent Martha Teichner.

1995: Christo & Jeanne-Claude’s Reichstag 08:30

And then there was "The Gates" – an array of saffron stretching for 23 miles through New York's Central Park.

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Pedestrians walk beneath Christo and Jeanne-Claude's "The Gates," Saturday, Feb. 12, 2005, in New York's Central Park.  KATHY WILLENS/AP

Christo and Jeanne-Claude self-financed their projects largely through the sale of drawings. As Jeanne-Claude was proud to say of the Reichstag, "The reason we want to do this project is, we want to see it."

Jeanne-Claude died in 2009 at the age of 74.  Christo was 84.

       
GALLERY:
 The art of Christo (1935-2020)

       
For more info:

        
Story produced by Juan Torres-Falcon. Editor: Lauren Barnello. 

       
See also: 

Art on "60 Minutes": Christo & Jeanne-Claude by 60 Minutes on YouTube