Sculptor Anish Kapoor To Use Blackest Black Ever

Anish Kapoor

Acclaimed sculptor Anish Kapoor, renowned for the use of colour and pigments in his production of his sculpture, is embracing the newly invented blackest black ever created, The artificial substance Vantablack which was created by London-based Surrey NanoSystems, dubbed as a kind of ‘super black’, the darkness of which does not exist in nature. The artist plans to incorporate the substance into his artistic practice, reports the BBC.

The substance was originally created for the possible use as a camouflage for stealth aircraft, or black out light inside telescopes, improving space photography. The company never had Kapoor in mind, or ever realised that their product would end up incorporated into the master’s work.

“We are delighted that an artist of Anish Kapoor’s stature and reputation is interested in exploring its possibilities in the creative sphere,” the company’s chief technology officer, Ben Jensen, told Dazed Digital.

The unique substance is comprised of arrays of vertically aligned carbon nano tubes, each about one 10,000th the width of a strand of human hair. As photons hit the material it is trapped, with only 0.035 percent of it reflected. This gives Vantablack a reflectivity of only 0.00035 on a scale of zero to one. By comparison, fresh snow has an average of .9, and pure charcoal, one of the darkest substances in nature, has a reflectivity of 0.04.

Sir Anish Kapoor, CBE, was born in 1954 is an Indian sculptor. Born in Bombay. The artist has lived and worked in London since the early 1970s where he moved to study art, first at the Hornsey College of Art and later at the Chelsea School of Art and Design. Bombay was an influence for the artist that still exists today – through its richly coloured spices. Kapoor represented Britain in the Venice Biennale in 1990, when he was awarded the Premio Duemila Prize, and in 1991 the artist received the Turner Prize. The artist has likened the substance of Vantablack – in a very poetic fashion – to a forest of very tall, incredibly thin, densely packed trees.

“It’s blacker than anything you can imagine. It’s so black you almost can’t see it,” Kapoor told the BBC. “It has a kind of unreal quality.”

“It’s effectively like a paint,” Kapoor told the BBC. “Imagine a space that’s so dark that as you walk in you lose all sense of where you are, what you are, and especially all sense of time – something happens to your emotional self and in disorientation one has to reach in for other resources.”


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