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December 14, 1986|Suzanne Muchnic

CHRISTO: SURROUNDED ISLANDS, photographs by Wolfgang Volz, introduction and picture commentary by David Bourdon, essay by Jonathan Fineberg, report by Janet Mulholland (Abrams: $65; 696 pp., more than 1,000 illustrations). The contemporary artist who measures his work in miles is remembered this season with an enormous publication on a 1983 project that encircled 11 islands in Biscayne Bay with 6.5 million square feet of pink polypropylene fabric. "Christo: Surrounded Islands" documents every aspect of the complex project. Bureaucratic correspondence, mug shots of Dade County commissioners, a sample of the actual pink fabric, dramatic photos of the work in process and glorious aerial views of the completed art are but a few subjects wrapped up in a pretty package that probably would have been as effective at half the size.

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