Christo's floating yellow walkway on Italy's Lake Iseo under construction

Walking on water

Christo's floating yellow walkway on Italy's Lake Iseo under construction

Aerial view of the project’s building yard on the Montecolino peninsula (right) and the temporary storage on Lake Iseo (left), February 2016 (Courtesy Wolfgang Volz)

Covering more than 753,000 square feet, a floating dock is set to transform Italy’s Lake Iseo, covering it in a shimmering dahlia-yellow fabric consisting of 200,000 high-density polyethylene cubes.

The man behind the scheme is Bulgarian artist Christo Vladimirov Javacheff. Eleven years after he worked alongside his late wife Jeanne-Claude in Central Park, Christo is once again ready to dazzle audiences.

His solo project, known as The Floating Piers, is located 50 miles Northeast of Milan and will support visitors from June 18 – June 3 this year. Resting on Lake Iseo’s surface, the 200,000 polyethylene cubes will undulate in the waves as they connect the towns of Sulzano and Monte Isola with the island of San Paolo.

Encircling the island, the piers will have a width of 52 feet and stretch just under two miles across the lake. The piers will also be overlaid with 807,300 square feet of yellow fabric. Sewn into the cubes, the fabric echoes the pigments of the roof tiles seen on the buildings surrounding Lake Iseo. Here, it will continue its journey from the lake, setting a mile-long course through the pedestrian streets of Sulzano and Peschiera Maraglio.

At geo – die Luftwerker, 75,000 square meters of yellow fabric are sewn into panels, Lübeck, Germany, February 2016 (Courtesy Wolfgang Volz)

Since his Central Park park installation in 2005, which saw 7,500 gates of saffron-colored panels line the park’s walkways, The Floating Piers will be the first project completed since his wife’s passing in 2009. Back then he described his work as “a golden river appearing and disappearing through the branches of the trees.”

This year, another river, though this time orange, will run through Christo’s location of choice. As was the case in New York, and indeed all his projects, The Floating Piers will be gather funding solely through selling his own original works of art.

At a factory in Fondotoce at Lago Magiore, 200,000 high-density polyethylene cubes are manufactured over a period of eight months before delivered to the project’s storage in Montecolino, January 2016 (Courtesy Wolfgang Volz)

“They will feel the movement of the water under foot,” Christo said in the New York Times. “It will be very sexy, a bit like walking on a water bed.” Once the 16-day exhibition is over, all components used in the installation will be removed and industrially recycled.