The Floating Piers on Lake Iseo


What: The Floating Piers, Art Project
Where: Lake Iseo, Italy

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (18)

Everyone wants to be there and take the opportunity once to wander over water

It’s good to have friends everywhere. Particularly if they then also have a house at Lake Iseo, where the American environmental artist Christo has just covered half of the lake. Lago what? I do know the Lago di Como and Lake Lugano, but must confess that I had never heard of the fourth largest of the Italian lakes. Last weekend, our friends asked us to join their terrace party above the lake, from where we were able to see Christos art, ‘The Floating Piers’ on the water from an optimum perspective. An occasion to which all faces from the international art world show up and since its start on June 18*, already more than 500,000 art enthusiasts from around the world made pilgrimages to this contemplative place Sulzano.

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (8)

Lake Iseo measures at its lowest point 250 meters and extends over a length of 25 km

Since Christos projects ‘The Gates’ 2005 in New York and the veiled Berlin Reichstag in 1995, which he realized with his wife Jeanne-Claude, who died in 2009, the Floating Piers must be the largest and probably the last wrapping project of the 81 years old artist. In 2014, Christo and his team chose the by Bergamo Alps framed, picturesque Lake Iseo. Here Christo installed three kilometer long bridges that connect Sulzano with the islands Monte Isola and San Paolo. The special feature of this floating pontoons is the yellow-orange material which conceals the lands and optically connects the mainland by another one and a half kilometer pedestrian paths in Sulzano and Monte Isola.

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (20)

Majestically, the Monte Isola overtops the Lake Iseo, it is the largest island in a southern-European inland lake

The influx of visitors – even for the organizer – is larger than expected: more than 55,000 visitors crowd through the narrow streets of Sulzanos every day, and wait patiently at temperatures of 35 degrees partly up to four hours before they can enter the Floating Piers. In the evening, the situation relaxes a little and I was able to enter the Floating Piers without queuing for hours. What a great atmosphere! The low sun made the yellow-orange fabric that was manufactured by a German company, shine. So did the faces of the visitors, who gratefully enjoyed the refreshing breeze after extreme waiting hours in the heat. The atmosphere was so nice, all somehow in a good mood: What a Happening!

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (3)

MyStylery in action

I walked barefoot on the Floating Piers, wanted to feel the catchy and yet soft surface of the substance. Delightful, this permanent, gentle swinging, that intensified when the patrol lifeboats drove past. Enjoying the view of the mountains and the sightlines of Piers, with slightly fluctuating waves, although I already had mainland under my feet again. The Floating Piers are an appeal to all senses, an absolute highlight, although a temporary one, as all events of Christo are limited in time. On July 3, the show is over, then the Floating Piers are degraded and in the idyllic Sulzano – and the house of my friends – returns to ease.  BvH

View on the shore of Sulzano

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (7)

Idyllic Sulzano: Here is the access to the Floating Piers

*Info Floating Piers:

Christo’s art installation ‘The Floating Piers’ can be seen for a total of 16 days. Those who want to reach the island Monte Isola and from there San Paolo by foot through the 16 -meter wide, floating in the water lands, can do that until July 3, 2016. After that the by Christo financed, 15 million expensive artwork, will be recycled. Admission is free.

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (17)

The Lake Iseo is 100 kilometers east of Milan and lies 200 kilometers west from Venice

Tip:

Can’t be bothered to wait for hours? Then you have to get up early. In the morning at 6 am or after 8 pm the Floating Piers are less crowded. Around 10 pm the last visitors were able to enter the ridges. There is the possibility to visit the island Monte Isola by boat. Tickets for this should be booked online in advance.

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (5)

The house of my friends at Lago D’Iseo

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (6)

I am completely in love with the lush green of the lake

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (12)

For Sulzano with its 1917 inhabitants there are usually two or three Carabinieri responsible. For Christos art happening, the police presence was substantially increased

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (16)

100,000 square meters of dahlias and yellow, shimmering hightech material were processed …

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (25)

… which had previously been made in Münster and sewn by a Lübeck company, both in Germany

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (19)

Project Manager Wolfgang Volz, who accompanies Christo for many projects, photographs the visitors and gets celebrated

Wander over water

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (21)

The village of Peschiera Maraglio – on the by the way car-free Monte Isola …

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (22)

… enchants with romantic alleys and typical Italian houses …

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (23)

… its picturesque harbor …

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (24)

… and small cafés. Tip: With its idyllic location the Ristorante Al Castello looks very welcoming. Above the hotel Residence Castello Oldofredi is located

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (28)

The island of San Paolo belongs to the Beretta family, the great Italian weapons manufacturer dynasty

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (30)

The Villa of the Beretta family is secured as Fort Knox: Of course everyone is curious about how weapon-dealers probably live

What a gigantic magnet for visitors

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (1)

Turn a blind eye: On the 16-meter-wide webs, stewards provide a regulated processes. Sitting down or even a picnic is normally not allowed here

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (29)

And there’s the maestro himself on a special boat: Christo (with his snow-white hair above right) passes through the applauding crowd: Grazie and thank you, Christo!

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (27)

By the way, the Floating Piers consist of 220,000 polyethylene cubes, each 35 centimeters high

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (26)

Also this feathered lake resident likes the Floating Piers

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (2)

Isn’t this the perfect color combination – my pink dress and glowing orange fabric of the Floating Piers

MyStylery Christo Floating Piers Lago D'Iseo (9)

Scenic evening atmosphere and a beautiful sunset on Lake Iseo: what more could you want?

Contact:

www.thefloatingpiers.com

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