Construction is now complete on ArcelorMittal Orbit, the gargantuan tower created for the London 2012 Olympics. Sponsored by steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal, Orbit is the design of London-based artist Anish Kapoor, in collaboration with imaginative structural engineer Cecil Balmond. Consisting of a continuous looping lattice of tubular steel, it stands 115 meters tall, 22 meters taller than the Statue of Liberty. Visitors will be able to take a trip up the statuesque structure in a huge lift to the special viewing platform that offers unparalleled views of the entire 250 acres of the Olympic Park, plus London’s skyline. They will then have the option of descending the 350 meter spiral staircase.
Kapoor says of his work: “I wanted the sensation of instability, something that was continually in movement. Traditionally a tower is pyramidal in structure, but we have done quite the opposite, we have a flowing, coiling form that changes as you walk around it. … It is an object that cannot be perceived as having a singular image, from any one perspective. You need to journey round the object, and through it. Like a Tower of Babel, it requires real participation from the public.”