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Friday  February 18, 2005


The opening day ceremony by the Sheep's Meadow, Central Park


Saturday, February 19, 7:25 PM
Wednesday, February 23, 2:45 AM

New York has been given an extraordinary gift: The Gates by Christo (that's a link to the Christo Artsy page) and Jeanne-Claude . More than 25 years in the planning, The Gates is their latest public art installation. The husband and wife team has wrapped buildings, bridges and islands throughout the United States and Europe, put giant umbrellas and undulating fences across California and Japan, wrapped trees in Switzerland and stacked 55-gallon oil drums in the United Arab Emirates. The Gates is the first of their environmental installations that I have seen in person and, I must say, I'm impressed. They are big, extremely orange and more than 7,000 stand on every single path in Central Park.

Christo's Gates Bloomberg  Copyright 2005 Phebe S. Pierson
Mayor Bloomberg mingles with the people on opening day

The $20+ million installation was paid for entirely by Christo and Jeanne-Claude and sale of all books and other paraphernalia will benefit the Central Park Conservancy and other park-related non-profits.

Christo's Gates 16  Copyright 2005 Joseph Pierson
The view from inside the Dairy

Amidst comparisons to "traffic cones" and an undercurrent of reactions ranging from mild distaste to extreme dislike, I am firmly in the camp of those that find the Gates to be whimsical, beautiful and astonishing in their scope. Interestingly, every taxi driver we have asked thinks the gates are contemptible and a waste of money. But, whether you love them or hate them, there is no question that they represent a huge spike in New York's tourist economy since 9/11. Ask any hot dog vendor in the park how his sales have compared to last February. So, enclosed herewith are a series of photographs of the Gates taken by my daughter during our visits on February 12th and 13th, the first two days of what will be a two week installation.

Christo's Gates 19  Copyright 2005 Phebe S. Pierson
Before unfurling

Watch the Quicktime movie of a gate unfurling!
Marvel at Phebe's spontaneously brilliant cinematography!
Listen to Joseph & Alex's poignant narration!

Christo's Gates 23  Copyright 2005 Joseph Pierson

Christo's Gates 28  Copyright 2005 Phebe S. Pierson

Christo's Gates 30  Copyright 2005 Phebe S. Pierson

Christo's Gates 47  Copyright 2005 Phebe S. Pierson

And here are David Letterman's Top Ten Most Common Questions About The Gates:
         10. Why?
         9. Twenty-five million for drapes?
         8. Will it improve my cell phone reception?
         7. When I get mugged by a guy hiding behind a giant curtained arch, which city agency should I sue?
         6. What's this I hear about filling up Central Park with Crisco?
         5. Where do I report a gate-jacking?
         4. This is a joke, right?
         3. If you rearrange the letters in "Christo" you can spell "Ostrich."
         2. Would you describe this more as a colossal waste of money or a colossal waste of time?
         1. Are they urine-proof?

Christo's Gates 48  Copyright 2005 Phebe S. Pierson

Hey, isn't the EvenHand site supposed to be about cops? What's with all the so-called art? Okay, fine:

Christo's Gates NYPD  Copyright 2005 Phebe S. Pierson
One of Mayor Bloomberg's NYPD security officers

Photographs Copyright 2005 Phebe S. Pierson. All rights reserved.

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

In other news, I will be producing and directing a short film this spring, The Lost City of New York. Click on the title for internship and job opportunities.

Don't forget to visit the EvenHand Store. We offer EvenHand posters, T-shirts and SLPD shoulder patches, as well as the insanely popular "FAT COP" tank top. There is some lively trading going on in the SLPD shoulder patch department, so if you have a police patch you're interested in trading, please visit the EvenHand store or send an email.

The EvenHand listing on the Internet Movie Database has accumulated some votes, but more are always welcome. If you have seen the film, please take a minute and register your vote there. Thanks to all who have left great reviews on the IMDb site! Here's a link:

- Joseph Pierson


Here's some information on where you can find EvenHand

next: Orange You Glad I didn't Say Saffron?

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