A rendering of The Mastaba. Photo: Christo.

Christo Unveils Plans for 500-Ton Floating Structure for London’s Hyde Park

This summer, Christo will construct a sixty-five-foot-tall, five-hundred-ton mastaba, a trapezoidal structure that was used as a burial tomb by the ancient Egyptians. Andrew R. Chow of the New York Times reports that the temporary floating structure will be made up of 7,506 oil barrels and will float in Hyde Park’s Serpentine Lake in London. The artist’s proposal for the work was approved by the Westminister Council last week.

Christo originally designed a mastaba for a site in Texas in 1975 and is currently planning to build a permanent one in Abu Dhabi, which he says will be the largest public artwork in the world. He first conceived of the piece in October 2016. Last year, he built a model of the work at one-tenth scale in the Black Sea, near the Bulgarian coast. The $4.2 million project will be funded by the artist. The mastaba will make its debut in London around June 19, when the Serpentine Gallery will open an exhibition dedicated to Christo and his late wife, Jeanne-Claude. The show will be the first presentation of works by the husband-and-wife team in London since 1979.