The world’s largest art object called Mastaba is to be built in the Abu Dhabi Desert. The geometric design will consist of 410 thousand multi-coloured barrels. Its height will be 150 meters, width – 300 meters, depth – 225 meters. The word mastaba (from Arabic: “bench”) means a rectangular superstructure of ancient Egyptian tombs, built of mud brick or, later, stone, with sloping walls and a flat roof.
The construction was conceived by Christo and Zhanna-Claude, the most famous pair of artists who worked in the genre of Land Art. They have gained worldwide fame due to their large-scale installations in the form of “packed” buildings, attractions and landscaped objects.
The artists thought about building the construction in the UAE desert in 1979, during their first visit to the Arabian Peninsula. Mastaba is planned to be built about 160 km from the city, in the Liwa desert. It will be made from 410,000 multicoloured barrels to create a colourful mosaic that will echo Islamic architecture. The structure will reach 150 metres in height and will be even higher than the Great Pyramid of Giza.
In the summer of 1995, the artists packed the Reichstag building in Berlin. They used 70 rolls of silver fabric with a total area of more than 100 thousand square metres and 8 kilometres of bright blue rope. During the two weeks of the project, it was visited by about five million people, and it took almost 23 years for the artists to realise their idea.
Another project of the artists, The Surrounded Islands, of 1983, had an unexpectedly beneficial effect on the ecology of Biscay Bay in Miami. The 11 islands had been wrapped in a bright pink cloth for two weeks. When analysing the surroundings of the islands, workers pulled out about 40 tons of garbage from the ocean.
The Mastaba project is still waiting for the government’s approval, and the construction period is expected to take about three years. This means that the project can be revealed to the public already in 2027.