HE IS a household name and one of the few artists who can command widespread recognition – not just in the UK but globally too.
Ever since he represented Britain at the Venice Biennale in 1990 and then going on to win the country’s most prestigious art accolade, the Turner Prize in 1991, he has been widely regarded as one of the most important contemporary artists of our times.
His last major UK exhibition at Houghton Hall in Norfolk was all set to open in March, when the pandemic struck and everyone was, more or less, forced to stay at home (unless they were involved in essential work).Much of the exhibition and the artefacts on display were lodged in the grounds of the stately home, originally completed in 1720.
Houghton House was once the home of Britain’s first prime minister Robert Walpole (1676-1745) and prime minister for 21 years from 1721. The Cholmondeley family, Walpole’s descendants’, still live in a wing of the house, while parts of the grounds and house are open to the public and have housed artist displays before. The spring exhibition had to be cancelled.
Thankfully, Anish Kapoor at Houghton Hall opened to the public in July and was a spectacular success.
The 24 exhibits vacated one of the country’s most illustrious houses and accompanying grounds on November 1 last year. Houghton Hall is seen as one of the best examples of Palladian architecture that exist in the country today. Italian architect Andrea Palladio (1508-1580) was inspired by the classical buildings of Ancient Greece.
Rose Hanbury, Marchioness of Cholmondeley, told Tatler: “It’s been wonderful to see how popular the show has been this year, with visitors coming from far and wide.”
Among the striking exhibits on display were Sky Mirror (2018), Eight Eight (2004), Grace and