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Monday, 4 May, 1998, 09:34 GMT 10:34 UK
Into the void with Anish Kapoor
Anish Kapoor sculpture - Double Mirror 1997-8  Two parts, 200cm diameter, each, Hayward Gallery
Double Mirror, 1997-8. Photos courtesy Hayward Gallery
An exhibition of the work of one of Britain's most inventive and interesting sculptors has opened in London. But for Anish Kapoor, who has won considerable acclaim as well as the prestigious Turner Prize, it is his first major show in Britain.

Anish Kapoor sculpture, Iris, 1998 Stainless Steel,  200cm diameter, Hayward Gallery
Iris, 1998
More than 20 of his unique stainless steel, stone and fibreglass works are on show at the Hayward Gallery, on London's South Bank, until June 14. The gallery is normally shared between two artists, but Kapoor has been granted the entire space for his exhibition.

'The fear of oblivion'

Many of his pieces have been incorporated into the walls and floor of exhibition area. The effect leaves the viewer disorientated and unsure if the work is two or three-dimensional.

Anish Kapoor has said that at the heart of his work is "the fear of oblivion", "emptiness" and the depiction of "the void".

"I think disorientation - or reorientation one should say - causes one to pause and I think part of the purpose has to be to somehow slow time down, to make that moment of pause as long as possible," he said.

Anish Kapoor's sculpture, Turning the world inside out, 1995,  148x184x188cm, Hayward Gallery
Turning the world inside out, 1995 - has a void disappearing into its centre
One piece called "Suck" - is an enormous, stainless steel funnel whose centre seems to disappear into the floor like a gigantic whirlpool. It creates a sense of dislocation and a feeling of being pulled in to the centre of the sculpture.

In other works he uses dyes on stone and fibreglass to create the illusion that they are instead made of a soft fabric.

The artist

Anish Kapoor was born in India in 1954. He moved to London in the early 1970s to study art and has lived and worked in Britain ever since.

The head of exhibitions at the Hayward Gallery, Martin Caiger-Smith, said: "Anish is one of the most interesting of the middle generation of British sculptors who emerged in the 1980s.

Anish Kapoor sculpture, Dragon, 1992, Limestone and pigment, Hayward Gallery
Dragon, 1992 - made of limestone and blue pigment
"He's been producing for the last eight or nine years the work in this exhibition and it's an extraordinary body of work. He's an artist at the peak of his form."

Art critic Heather Waddell said: "This exhibition is completely futuristic. To me, as we head towards the millennium it's actually the most refreshing and positive thing I've seen."

BBC News
Kapoor: "Very interested in emptiness" (33")
BBC News
Kapoor: "Colour is a condition of matter" (56")
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