What is it with Anish Kapoor and Red?

Learn why the colour signifies home, earth and motherhood for this remarkable sculptor.

While some colours may trigger a wide variety of responses in viewers, red – the colour of human injury – is perhaps the one pigment that almost all of us respond to in the same way. And nowhere is that response more forceful than in the art of Anish Kapoor.

“Kapoor’s reds are intense,” writes Stella Paul in our new book Chromaphilia: The Story of Colour in Art. “For Kapoor, ‘Red is the colour of the earth, it’s not a colour of deep space; it’s obviously the colour of blood and body. I have a feeling that the darkness it reveals is a much deeper and darker darkness than that of blue or black.’ When asked about the colour of his childhood homeland in India, Kapoor commented, ‘I’m sure it’s red’.”


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