Join a guided tour of the permanent collection, on Saturdays and Sundays at 3 pm.
Anthony Caro was born on March 8, 1924, in New Malden, United Kingdom. From 1942 to 1944, he studied at Christ’s College, Cambridge, and graduated with a degree in engineering, all while attending Farnham School of Art during his holidays. From 1946, after returning from naval service during World War II, he studied sculpture at the Regent Street Polytechnic and then at the Royal Academy from 1947 to 1952. From 1951 to 1953 he worked as an assistant to Henry Moore and taught at St. Martin’s School of Art in London. During this period he worked extensively in clay and plaster, and his sculptures were primarily figurative.
In 1956 he held his first solo exhibition at the Galleria del Naviglio in Milan, and the following year had his first solo show in London at the Gimpel Fils Gallery. After visiting the United States and meeting Robert Motherwel, Kenneth Noland, David Smith, and other artists, he returned to London in 1960 and made his first abstract steel sculptures, which were shown at the Whitechapel Gallery in 1963. His works in brightly painted, prefabricated materials, initiated and developed a new aesthetic in sculpture that would have a lasting effect on the next generation of artists. Although his preferred medium was steel, he also experimented with bronze, wood, paper, and lead.
In 1963 Caro began a two-year teaching position at Bennington College in Vermont, and one year later held his first solo exhibition in New York at the André Emmerich Gallery. Caro was the subject of several retrospective exhibitions throughout the 1960s, and was invited to show at the 1966 Venice Biennale and the 1969 São Paulo Bienal. From 1970 onwards he started making sculptures in unpainted steel. Numerous museums have mounted exhibitions dedicated to his work, such as The Museum of Modern Art, New York in 1975; the Tate Gallery, London in 1991; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo in 1995; and the National Gallery, London, in 1998. Caro was numerous of prizes during his career, including Tokyo’s Imperial Award for Sculpture, and held honorary degrees from Cambridge and Yale University. He was knighted in 1987 and was also an honorary member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, New York, and of the Accademia di Brera, Milan. Anthony Caro died in London on October 23, 2013.