Sir Anish Kapoor, an Indian-British sculptor, has a diverse background and mix of experiences. Born in Mumbai, he studied Electrical Engineering in Israel, before giving it up to pursue his artistic dreams to Britain. Kapoor is very well known for his biomorphic style of structuring his sculptures, using simple shapes and bright, monochromatic colours to maximum effect.
Dirty Corner (2011) is one of the most talked about installations at the Palace of Versailles. It frequently finds itself at the centre of controversy, having been compared to a sculpture of female genitalia, and vandalised numerous times. However amidst the vandalism and politics, Dirty Corner is without a doubt a fascinating installation by Kapoor. With a goblet like entrance, the sculpture is a huge steel tunnel that is 60 metres long and 8 metres high. Visitors are invited to enter the mighty tunnel, which pushes them to go further on and on, deeper into the void of darkness, up to the point that the light on the other end of the tunnel is no longer visible, and they are forced to use their senses for judging the way forward.
Exhibited at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, India’s first contemporary art biennale, Descension (2014) is an extraordinary piece of art, and a fascinating exploration of scale and movement within contemporary art. The piece is made up of a black whirlpool that has been sunk into the ground, surrounded by an iron gate. Viewers watch as the whirlpool endlessly spins into a bottomless bed of the unknown. The whole effect is mysterious and bewildering, and the experience of visiting Descension is an entirely unique one.
Kapoor overcomes the forlorn, insurmountable distance between sky and earth, by finally bringing them together, if not practically, at least philosophically through his installation that is currently installed outside the theatre in Wellington Circus, Nottingham. Sky Mirror (2006) is a concave disc of impeccably polished heavy stainless steel that is pointed towards the sky at a perfect angle, reflecting and displaying the vast blue and scurrying clouds upon the ground. The mirror’s ability to cleverly invert and distort the sky, and to place it in the wrong place, calls into question ideas of reality and permanence.
Cloud Gate (2006) has appeared in numerous movies, music videos and photographs, and is located in Chicago. It is one of the most popular installations ever made and id well known for being a tourist attraction. The beauty of Cloud Gate lies in its reflective properties. With its smooth and blemish-free surface, Cloud Gate reflects and warps the city in a peculiar way, creating fascinating geometrical and colourful visuals of the city scape and the faces of surrounding people. The underside of Cloud Gate has the most unique reflective qualities, and is a popular place for photography. The sculpture is affectionately known as the The Bean due to its bean like shape.
ArcelorMittal Orbit (2012) is a spectacle of sculpture and structural engineering, designed by Anish Kapoor for the 2012 Summer Olympics and Paralympic Games. Located in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford, London, it is a legendary sculpture, the tallest piece of public art in the UK with two observatories inside. This project was handed over to Kapoor when Tessa Jowell, the Olympics Minister, wanted to add an extra edge to the park, and to create something which would stand as a reminder of the 2012 Olympics in London. Anish Kapoor, along with Cecil Balmon, created the masterpiece, including spiral walkway and twisted stairways which lead to the observatories, giving it a unique and distinctive look.