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Christo: five key works

Christo stacked and floated 7,506 pink and purple barrels in a lake in London's Hyde Park in an imposing 20-metre-high and 40-metre-long piece.

The spectacular temporary installations of Bulgarian-born US artist Christo have appeared in many parts of the world, from far-flung landscapes to famous city landmarks.

Here are five of the most memorable:

- 'Wall of Oil Barrels', Paris (1962) -

One of Christo's first works with his wife and lifetime collaborator, Jeanne-Claude, was a wall of 89 rusting gasoline and oil barrels erected in a narrow street in central Paris.

Subtitled "The Iron Curtain", their "art barricade" was a protest against the Berlin Wall built the previous year.

Paris authorities had not given permission for the installation but the artists went ahead anyway, blocking traffic for eight hours before having to pull it down.

- 'The Umbrellas', US and Japan (1991) -

Around 3,100 giant umbrellas were opened on the same day in valleys in California and Japan for a simultaneous installation that stayed up for 18 days, having taken months to erect.

Around half the six-metre-tall (19 feet) umbrellas were blue and set up in Japan's Ibaraki prefecture; the ones in California were bright yellow.

The work "reflected the similarities and differences in the ways of life and the use of the land in two inland valleys in Japan and the USA," the artists' website says.

Online magazine Artsy described it as "one of the great land art projects of the era".

The installation was marred by tragedy when a 33-year-old woman was killed by a falling umbrella at the US site and a worker killed in Japan during its dismantling.

- 'Wrapped Reichstag', Berlin (1995) -

This signature work -- in which the German parliament was wrapped in 100,000 square metres (1,076,390 square feet) of thick, silvery fabric -- got the greenlight more than two decades after Christo first asked permission.

Rejected by Berlin multiple times, it finally went ahead after a vote in parliament won through in 1994.

"It was one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen: 100 rock climbers abseiling down the facade of the Reichstag, slowly unfurling this huge silvery curtain," Christo said in The Guardian newspaper in 2017.

The material was tied in place by more than 15 kilometres (nine miles) of blue rope.

Visited by millions of people, it came down after two weeks even though the city wanted to keep it up longer.

The vertical folds of the drapery highlighted the "features and proportions of the imposing structure, revealing the essence of the Reichstag", the artists' website says.

- 'The Floating Piers', Italy (2016) -

A three-kilometre (1.9-mile) undulating walkway across a northern Italy lake, this installation of 200,000 floating yellow cubes was a major hit with the public.

It created paths for visitors to reach scattered islands on Lake Iseo, giving the impression of walking on water "or perhaps the back of a whale," Christo said.

The 16-day installation was Christo's first after the death of Jeanne-Claude in 2009, but the duo had been planning it since 1970.

- 'The London Mastaba', (2018) -

Christo stacked and floated 7,506 pink and purple barrels in a lake in London's Hyde Park in an imposing 20-metre-high and 40-metre-long piece.

In place for several weeks, the flat-topped trapezoid structure, in a mastaba form, caused some puzzlement among viewers.

"There are no messages: there is something in it to discover yourself," Christo told AFP.