02. Biography

Anish Kapoor conceives of Art on the grand scale.

His mainly sculptural work blends Western culture with his eastern roots. His sculptures are generally simple: curves, vivid colours, often monochrome. They invite the spectator to linger on their cavities, dark crannies, stunning size, and beautiful epure. Inspired by his native India, his first pieces were covered in colour pigments, echoing the vibrant spices found in Hindu markets and temples. More recently, Kapoor has worked on the idea of the mirror and surround reflection, as shown by the wide concave mirror (Sky Mirror) installed in Nottingham in 2001, then in 2006 at the Rockefeller Center in New York. In the early 2000s, Kapoor shifted towards gigantism and the monumental: Taratantara is 35 metres long. In 2004, he inaugurated Cloud Gate, a steel sculpture weighing about 100 tonnes, at Millennium Park in Chicago. Increasingly he blurred the boundary between sculpture and architecture, and won the City of London’s competition to build a monument for the 2012 Olympic Games. Orbit, a steel tower 115 metres in height, is the tallest art monument in the United Kingdom. He also helped design a metro station in Naples, Italy.

Born in Bombay in 1954, Anish Kapoor has lived and worked in London since 1972. His creations are regularly shown in leading museums and international institutions. He represented the UK at the 1985 Paris Biennale and at the 1990 Venice Biennale, where he won the Duemila Prize. In 1991 he won the Turner Prize, a prestigious contemporary-art accolade. He was elected a member of the Royal Academy in 1999, and named a Commander of the Order of the British Empire by the Queen in 2003. His work is shown in the world’s premier museums (MoMA New York, Guggenheim New York and Bilbao). In 2011, he was the guest artist of the Monumenta exhibition at the Grand Palais in Paris with his piece Leviathan. In 2015 he took part in the Venice Biennale, just before exhibiting his monumental sculptures in the Château de Versailles gardens.

© Jonathan Letoublon