Day 338/365 of Steel – Anish Kapoor

Sir Anish Mikhail Kapoor (born 12 March 1954) is a British-Indian sculptor specializing in installation art and conceptual art. In the late 1980s and 1990s, Kapoor was acclaimed for his explorations of matter and non-matter.

Many of his sculptures seem to recede into the distance, disappear into the ground or distort the space around them. Since 1995, he has worked with the highly reflective surface of polished stainless steel. These works are mirror-like, reflecting or distorting the viewer and surroundings.

Anish Kapoor - Cave, 2012, Corten, 551 x 800 x 805 cm
Fig 1: Anish Kapoor – Cave, 2012, Corten, 551 x 800 x 805 cm
Photo: © Oak Taylor-Smith

Since 2006, Cloud Gate, a 110-ton stainless steel sculpture with a mirror finish, has been permanently installed in Millennium Park in Chicago. Viewers are able to walk beneath the sculpture and look up into an “omphalos” or navel above them.

Cloud Gate, Chicago
Fig 2: Cloud Gate, Chicago
Photo: Emmanuel Appiah

In 2008, Kapoor created Memory for the Guggenheim Foundation, his first piece in Cor-Ten. Weighing 24 tons and made up of 156 parts, it calls to mind Richard Serra’s huge, rusty steel works, which also invite viewers into perceptually confounding interiors.

Anish Kapoor's "Turning the World Upside Down, Jerusalem", at the Israel Museum.
Fig 3: Anish Kapoor’s “Turning the World Upside Down, Jerusalem”, at the Israel Museum.
Photo: Oren Rozen

In 2010, Turning the World Upside Down was commissioned and installed at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. The sculpture is described as a “16-foot tall polished-steel hourglass” and it reflects and reverses the Jerusalem sky and the museum’s landscape. In 2011, Kapoor exhibited Dirty Corner at the Fabbrica del Vapore in Milan.

Anish Kapoor, Dirty corner, Corten Steel
Fig 4: Anish Kapoor, Dirty corner, Corten Steel

The work consists of a huge steel volume, 60 m long and 8 m high, that visitors enter. Inside, they gradually lose their perception of space, as it gets progressively darker and darker until there is no light, forcing people to use their other senses to guide them through the space. The Greater London Authority selected Kapoor’s Orbit sculpture as the permanent artwork for the Olympic Park of the 2012 Olympic Games. At 115 m tall, Orbit is the tallest sculpture in the UK.

Anish Kapoor, Dirty corner, Corten Steel
Fig 5: Anish Kapoor, Dirty corner, Corten Steel

About the Author:

Bruno Dursin – Managing Director at Believe in Steel. Bruno has more than 30 years of experience in promoting steel & steel solutions. His clients benefit from his extensive network within the building industry.

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