The towering achievement of Indian-born British artist Anish Kapoor stands alone in contemporary British art. The greatest British sculptor since Henry Moore, his monumental, biomorphic, mirrored works grace major cities the world over and have made him a household name. Extraordinary pieces of public sculpture, luminous with reflected light, they distort ideas of space and play with the line between art and architecture, exerting a curious, totemic power over their often-genteel settings.
‘If Duchamp declared that all objects in the world are art,’ Kapoor has said, referring to the French Surrealist’s famous 1917 submission of a urinal for a New York exhibition, ‘then I am interested in the next stage of that argument…. that all objects in the world are symbolic.’ Born in Bombay to an Iraqi-Jewish mother and a Hindu father, Kapoor has always drawn on the spiritual and mythological heritage of his upbringing. After a spell in Israel, he moved to London in 1973 and studied at Hornsey College of Art and Chelsea School of Art. His early works, such as As if to Celebrate, I Discovered a Mountain Blooming with Red Flowers (1981), were geometric shapes of raw colour evocative of the vivid kumkuma powder of Hindu ritual. In 1982 he represented Britain at the Paris Biennale and, from the late Eighties, moving away from colour, he began producing works such as The Earth (1992) and the mausoleum-like Descent into Limbo (1992) – his first haunting explorations into distortions and the symbolic potential of space.
In 1991, having represented Britain at the 1990 Venice Biennale, he won the Turner Prize. Over the next two decades, Kapoor would establish himself as one of the most important sculptors of his generation. In 2003 he was awarded a CBE and, a year later, earned his first public commission in the United States, the now-iconic Cloud Gate (2004-6) in Chicago. Other monumental public works followed, including Leviathan (2011) in Paris’s Grand Palais, and the iconic ArcelorMittal Orbit tower for London’s 2012 Olympic Games.
In 2009, Kapoor was the first living artist in Royal Academy history to be given the entirety of the gallery for a solo show.
When you save this search to your interests, Christie's will notify you by email when an upcoming sale includes items that match this interest.
You can save as many interests as you like, and you can edit, delete, or change your notification settings at any time.