Arts & Culture 2022

Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Reflecting on the 50th Anniversary of “Valley Curtain” and the Artists’ Legacy

Thu Jul 28, 2022
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Event Video

Although it only lasted a mere 28 hours in the winds of the Grand Hogback Mountain Range in 1972, Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s masterwork “Valley Curtain” sent ripples through the art world and continues to influence artists and art critics today. The 4½-acre curtain of orange fabric hanging across a Colorado highway took a team of more than 100 engineers, construction workers, and volunteers 28 months to plan and erect, to the delight of local residents, visitors and the art world alike. The dichotomy of its immense scale and brief existence enthralls people to this day.

Join us to discuss the “Valley Curtain” project: its conception, development and construction, and the five-decade legacy this formative work and other public installations of Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s. Hear from a panel of their colleagues with James Baker as moderator:

  • Jonathan Henery, Christo’s nephew involved in the daily workings of Christo and Jeanne-Claude and who now manages the couple’s studio and home in New York City and runs The Christo and Jeanne-Claude Foundation;
  • Dan Telleen, Vail resident and local businessman who, as a student at SummerVail at the time, traveled to Rifle and helped with the Valley Curtain installation;
  • Wolfgang Volz, assistant photographer of the Valley Curtain project. Later becoming the exclusive photographer for Christo and Jeanne-Claude, as well as one of the world’s premier landscape photographers who worked with Christo and Jeanne-Claude since 1971;
  • Vladimir Yavachev, Christo’s nephew who worked alongside him and Jeann-Claude from the age of 17, to help bring their work to life. After Christo’s and Jeanne-Claude’s passings, he recently oversaw the installation of their unfinished work “L’Arc De Triomphe” and is currently working on “The Mastaba” project, a permanent installation in UAE and
  • David Yust, Professor Emeritus of Colorado State University and world-renowned artist who was a friend and involved in numerous projects of Christo and Jeanne-Claude.

Don’t miss this opportunity to learn more about Christo and Jean-Claude’s audacious work and its continuing legacy 50 years later.

Additional Programming:

In the lobby this evening, we will be showing the 1973 Oscar-nominated short film about “Valley Curtain” starting at 5:20 p.m. If you have the time to arrive early, this 26-minute film will greatly enhance the overall program.

Can’t make it early? Watch it on YouTube .


There is limited parking at Vail Mountain School. However, there are enough spaces for those who have registered for the event so far.

Please note: Parking is only allowed in the parking lot at the school. Any parking on the Frontage road or Booth Creek Falls Road is prohibited and your vehicle will be towed or booted per the Town of Vail Police Department.

In the event the parking lot does fill up, you will need to park at the Vail Parking Structure and take the town bus which runs every 15 minutes to Booth Falls.

Presented in partnership with SummerVail Art Workshop Legacy Project.
Cindy Engles graciously underwrites our summer series.
Alpine Bank graciously sponsors our virtual programs. 

Event Video


James Baker

James Baker

Former Executive Director

Pilchuck Glass School

Dan Telleen

Dan Telleen

Board Member

Summervail Art Workshop

David Yust

David Yust

Artist and professor

Colorado State University

Vladimir Yavachev

Vladimir Yavachev

Operations and Project Director

Christo and Jeanne-Claude

Wolfgang Volz

Wolfgang Volz


Jonathan Henery

Jonathan Henery

Office Manager/VP

CVJ Corporation