Chris Knipp Writing: Movies, Politics, Art


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2019 8:12 pm 
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ANDREY PAOUNOV: WALKING ON WATER (2018) - SAN FRANCISCO FILM FESTIVAL 2019

[PREVIEW ONLY]

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CHRISTO STEPS OUT ON FLOATING PIERS IN WALKING ON WATER

A lively Christo film (if not a beautiful one)

Jeanne-Claude died in late 2009, putting an end to the earthly part of one of contemporary art's greatest and most visible working partnerships and longest-lasting romances. Born on the same day, Bulgarian Christo and French Jeanne-Claude were inseparable for half a century. This legendary artistic team created great temporary environmental works that have been a source of pleasure and astonishment to millions all over the world. Some of their most famous works were the wrapping of the Reichstag in Berlin and the Pont-Neuf in Paris; the 24-mile hill-scanning Running Fence in California's Sonoma and Marin counties (when this reviewer got involved), and - a special, long-delayed passion project, because close to home, The Gates in Central Park, New York - their home town for forty years. Floating Piers is Christo's first major project completed since his wife's passing.

It still belongs to her too. In 1970 the couple together conceived a "floating pier" project. It was to allow the visiting public to walk out over the water over a special, temporary, lightweight, linked "pier." They tried to carry out this scheme in Rio de la Plata between Argentina and Uruguay, but failed to get approval; they tried again inTokyo Bay, and that plan also failed. This is not unusual for them. A lot of their projects have had to be jettisoned, due nearly always not to technical but to bureaucratic obstacles. Then in June 2016, Floating Piers came into being in Italy, on Lake Iseo, in Lombardy, near the cities of Brescia and Bergamo. This is a film about that project. See my article, "The Art of Christo & Jeanne-Claude and the Maysles Films" (24 Apr 2015).

Walking on Water,105 mins., debuted at Locarno and was included in other festivals including Docudays UA International Human Rights Documentary Film Festivalm abd the San Francisco Film Festival, where it was screened for this review. For The Floating PIers, see the
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