My father built this scale model of the Reichstag for #christoandjeanneclaude in 1979, the year I was born. Now it is on exhibit in Brussels as part of show entitled Urban Projects at the same time that I am having my first solo exhibition with @harlan_levey_projects . Exactly what that means I don't know but it felt heavy enough to bring tears to my eyes as I stood in front of the model looking for traces of my father's hand.
My parents met at the Cleveland Institute of Art and followed their dreams to NYC, living in a VW van for the first months. In fact my dad dropped out before finishing his last year at CIA in order to do so. Two country kids going to make it in the big city. With a little luck and a lot of courage they bought an empty loft in Chelsea with two other artists that was to become their studio and home. 4000 square feet filled from floor to ceiling with used tires, no plumbing, heat or electric. It was perfect. But New York can be a beast and the weight of building a home from scratch along with raising a new born child was too much. Eventually both of them put their art careers on hold in order to meet the demands of the everyday, and more importantly provide me with an incredible childhood. My fathers studio became the woodshop in which he built kitchen cabinets, models, and fabricated other peoples artwork while my mother learned to weave samples on a loom given to her by a friend. I don't remember my parents as artists, I remember them as a craftsman and weaver that were always working long after I had been put to bed. When I saw this model it reminded me that everything I have, all the benefits and opportunities I enjoy are because they put my dreams ahead of their own. It is a gift I don't remember often enough and one that came crashing down hard on me as I stood in front of this scale model my father built the same year I was born.