The Turner Prize-winning artist Sir Anish Kapoor has won his battle to remove footage of his iconic Cloud Gate sculpture in Chicago from a National Rifle Assoc. (NRA) video.
“Their bullying and intimidation has not succeeded.” – Sir Anish Kapoor
In a prepared statement the artist stated, ”We are pleased to declare victory over the NRA. They have now complied with our demand to remove the unauthorised image of my sculpture Cloud Gate from their abhorrent video “The Violence of Lies”, which seeks to promote fear, hostility and division in American society.” He added, “Their bullying and intimidation has not succeeded.”
”This is a victory not just in defence of the copyright of my work, but it is also a declaration that we stand with those who oppose gun violence in America and elsewhere. The NRA will not be allowed to use art in support of their propaganda.Their toxic video called for the “clenched fist of truth”. We in our turn call for the clenched fist of resistance, solidarity and humanity.
“I invite the NRA to do the honourable thing and donate $1million to the victims of gun violence in America through charities such as Every Town for Gun Safety, The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, Giffords, The Brady Campaign and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.”
“We would like to thank the legal teams for their pro bono work on this important case: Nicholas Carlin, Jake Feaver and David Given of Phillips, Erlewine, Given & Carlin LLP John Charles Thomas of Stout Thomas & Johnson Simon Frankel, Justin Ganderson and Christina Copsey of Covington & Burling LLP Jeffrey S. Becker” – Anish Kapoor
Sir Anish Kapoor was born in Bombay, India in 1954 and lives and works in London. He studied at Hornsey College of Art (1973–77) followed by postgraduate studies at Chelsea School of Art, London (1977–78). Recent major solo exhibitions include Sakıp Sabancı Museum, Istanbul (2013); Martin Gropius Bau, Berlin (2013); Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney (2012); Le Grand Palais, Paris (2011); Mehboob Studios, Mumbai and National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi (2010); Royal Academy of Arts (2009) and the Turbine Hall, Tate Modern, London (2002). He represented Britain at the 44th Venice Biennale (1990), for which he was awarded the Premio Duemila. He won the Turner Prize in 1991 and has honorary fellowships from the London Institute and Leeds University (1997), the University of Wolverhampton (1999) and the Royal Institute of British Architecture (2001). He was awarded a CBE in 2003 and a Knighthood in 2013 for services to visual arts.
The sculpture and AT&T Plaza are located on top of Park Grill, between the Chase Promenade and McCormick Tribune Plaza & Ice Rink. Constructed between 2004 and 2006, the sculpture is nicknamed The Bean because of its shape. Made up of 168 stainless steel plates welded together, its highly polished exterior has no visible seams. It measures 33 by 66 by 42 feet (10 by 20 by 13 m) and weighs 110 short tons (100 t; 98 long tons).
The Kapoor design was inspired by liquid mercury, and the sculpture’s surface reflects and distorts the city’s skyline. Visitors are able to walk around and under Cloud Gate’s 12-foot (3.7 m) high arch. On the underside is the “omphalos” (Greek for “navel”), a concave chamber that warps and multiplies reflections. The sculpture builds upon many of Kapoor’s artistic themes, and it is popular with tourists as a photo-taking opportunity for its unique reflective properties.
The sculpture was the result of a design competition. After Kapoor’s design was chosen, numerous technological concerns regarding the design’s construction and assembly arose, in addition to concerns regarding the sculpture’s upkeep and maintenance. Various experts were consulted, some of whom believed the design could not be implemented. Eventually, a feasible method was found, but the sculpture’s construction fell behind schedule. It was unveiled in an incomplete form during the Millennium Park grand opening celebration in 2004, before being concealed again while it was completed. Cloud Gate was formally dedicated on May 15, 2006, and has since gained considerable popularity, both domestically and internationally.