Floating Piers

The artist Christo and his partner Jeanne-Claude (who died in 2009) have been creating temporary large-scale environmental art installations since 1961. I had the good fortune to see Running Fence in Marin County, California in 1976


photo: christojeanneclaude.net

and The Umbrellas at Tejon Ranch in southern California in 1991.

photo: christojeanneclaude.net

photo: christojeanneclaude.net

Since Alekka and I were traveling by train from Spello to Calais, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to stop and check out Christo’s latest creation along the way.

Floating Piers was at Lake Iseo in Lombardy in northwestern Italy. Our Airbnb host met us at the train station in nearby Marone, for which we were very grateful because it was a long way up the mountain to her house.


We got settled in and then walked back down to the town for dinner.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The next morning we visited with our host’s adorable Jack Russell terriers, Jack and Jill.


They have a surprise to show us…


Aww… puppies!

It was hard to tear ourselves away, but after all, we did come here to see the Floating Piers.

Christo’s website describes the project: “From June 18 to July 3, 2016, Italy’s Lake Iseo was reimagined. The Floating Piers consisted of 100,000 square meters of shimmering yellow fabric, carried by a modular dock system of 220,000 high-density polyethylene cubes floating on the surface of the water.”  The golden fabric covered some of the streets in the town of Sulzano on the mainland, the floating piers leading to two islands in the lake, and some streets on those islands.

We took a boat from Marone out to Monte Isola, the big island in the lake. We walked around the town there where the streets were covered with fabric. Some sections were looking a little worse for wear on day 14 of the 16-day exhibition, but it was still a cool effect.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Down by the water we learned that they were only allowing people to walk on one of the piers because of weather conditions. It seemed perfectly calm to me but those were the rules.



It was very crowded on that one pier so we got some food and sat at the edge of the lake in hopes that the other piers would open.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The piers were bright yellow and inviting and we were a bit jealous of the waterbirds who were obviously enjoying private access. But a couple of hours (and some beer, fries, and gelato) later, the guards changed the sign.


Hurray! Piers are opening!


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I’m already looking forward to Christo’s next projects, Over the River and The Mastaba.


About lornaofarabia

I am a teacher from Medford, Oregon. I currently live and work in Bangkok, Thailand.
This entry was posted in Elsewhere, Islands and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Floating Piers

  1. Bianca says:

    Wow, lucky Lorna Lago Iseo. I missed it but my daughter traveled from Ljubljana in Slovenia to visit the Christo creation on Lago Iseo. I love Italia di Norte and I am happy Christo is still creating these spectacular outdoor creations that dazzle as they make us think.
    Mille grazie, cara amica. Mi ;iace molto la sua storia ineteresante. baci e cari auguri da Rhode island.

Leave a comment here. I like hearing from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s