Over a quarter of a million flock to see Anish Kapoor's Leviathan in Paris

Didier Plowy – All rights reserved Monumenta 2011, French Minist

Over a quarter of a million people went to see Leviathan, a work by British artist Anish Kapoor which was on show at Paris’s Grand Palais for 40 days and closed on Thursday night, beating records and showing that art is still packs in the masses in the French capital.



Leviathan was the fourth work to be exhibited in the Monumenta series put on at the magnificent Grand Palais gallery since 2007 and it has beaten all records.

It consisted of a giant PVC inflatable of 80,000 square metres that the visitor entered to find a vast orange-lit space in which an eerie soundtrack played and then toured the bulbous, black exterior.

Reuters/Benoit Tessier

In total 277,687 people went to see the work – 6,942 per day, compared to 4,159 for the preceding show by French artist Christian Boltanski. Four days a week the doors were open until midnight and 11,229 people visited on the last day.

Kapoor, who was born in Mumbai and now lives and works in the UK, has staged a number of installations around the world. Among them are The dismemberment of Jeanne d’Arc, which was not offered to the Paris museum, and Virtual Svayambh, which did have a spell at the Paris city hall but only as a virtual mock-up. In the latter work a huge block of  red wax passes continually through a doorway leaving some of its surface behind.

Leviathan, which is named after a legendary monster of the deep, has been taken down and sent to Kapoor’s London studio.


Daily newsletterReceive essential international news every morning