Arc de Triomphe unwrapped as installation comes to end

Imagined in 1961 by the late Bulgarian-born artist Christo, "L'Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped" was brought to life posthumously by his nephew, Vladimir Yavatchev, at a cost of about 14 million euros ($16.54 million).

The wrapped Arc de Triomphe was on full view from Sept. 18 to Oct. 3, attracting tens of thousands of spectators including foreign tourists until the end.

For weeks before it was unveiled, workers on harnesses spent several days enveloping the 50-metre, 19th century arch in a silvery blue, recyclable plastic curtain.

It will take three weeks to remove all the fabric, ropes and scaffolding, and for the monument to be returned to its pristine state

Dutch tourist Saskia Vanderberg, took days off and brought her son to Paris last week to see the Arc de Triomphe before it goes back to "normal."

"Good thing it's temporary because then, it's special," Vanderberg said, adding that she had seen two other works of Christo in the past.

Christo, whose full name was Christo Javacheff, was known for his larger-than-life installations.

He wrapped up a stretch of coastline in Australia and the Reichstag parliament building in Berlin, and strung up a huge curtain in part of a canyon in Colorado. He worked closely with his wife Jeanne-Claude on the projects.

The pair covered Paris's Pont Neuf bridge in yellow cloth in 1985.

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