EXCLUSIVE: Andrey Panouov’s documentary Walking On Water about famed installation artist Christo’s latest logistically improbable, eye-candy work is having its North American premiere Saturday at the Toronto Film Festival, where the pic is playing in the TIFF Docs section.
The cameras follow Christo cinema verité style as he completes his mammoth The Floating Piers, a project that debuted in 2016 at Italy’s Lake Iseo near the Alps. The result is breathtaking and exhilarating to those who got to see it, as the clip shows: it’s 100,000 square meters of yellow fabric covering a dock composed of 220,000 high-density polyethylene cubes that float on the surface of the water, allowing users to “walk on water” for almost 2 miles.
In many ways the project from conception to completion is similar to Christo’s famed pieces like The Gates in New York’s Central Park (2005), The Surrounded Islands on Miami’s Biscayne Bay (1983) or wrapping everything from Berlin’s The Reichstag to Paris’ Pont Neuf. The difference: He finished the piers seven years after the death of his wife and collaborator, Jeanne-Claude. The pair teamed on all the famous Christo works after they met in Paris in 1958; they conceived of the pier idea in 1970.
Izabella Tzenkova and Valeria Giampietro are producers of the docu, which first screens Saturday night at TIFF Bell Lightbox 2.
Check out the clip above.