It All Started With a Stale Sandwich is a savvy celebration of the inspirational artworks created for Kaldor Public Art Projects over 50 years, with artists including Christo, Abramovic, Jeff Koons, and Gilbert & George.
50 years ago, Sydneysiders were shocked and the art world astonished by Christo’s wrapping of the Little Bay coastline. Suddenly, one million square feet of fabric connected Australia’s cultural landscape to an international avant-garde. Hungarian migrant and entrepreneur John Kaldor, who initiated this monumental work, has said: “it all started with a stale sandwich, in Christo’s studio in 1968 New York.”
Nearly a half-century later, Indigenous Australian artist Jonathan Jones created a monumental artwork for Kaldor Public Art Projects, to respond to the lost architecture and culturally significant Aboriginal objects collected in The Garden Palace in Sydney’s Botanic Gardens, and in so doing exposed its Aboriginal identity. In between these two stunning cultural bookends – Christo’s wrapping of landscape and Jones’ unearthing of cultural identity – Kaldor brought celebrity artist Marina Abramović to entice audiences towards an artistic sensibility, Gilbert & George to enliven the AGNSW with their “Singing Sculpture” and Jeff Koons to achieve an awesome feat of plant and steel construction with his much-loved “Puppy” at the MCA in Circular Quay.
Now, Project 34 (by Asad Raza) is about to be unveiled, and UK artist Michael Landy is designing the exhibition to celebrate 50 years of Kaldor Public Art Projects.
The first feature documentary from award winning Australian director Samantha Lang, It All Started With A Stale Sandwich revels in the public moments John Kaldor’s art projects created and shares the delights of his private passion for art.
You can find out more about the film here.
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