Anthony Caro (1924 - 2013) first established himself as a distinguished name in British art in the 1960s with his radical and brightly coloured steel sculptures, which were inspired by the writings of the formalist critics such as Clement Greenberg and by the Abstract Expressionists. Caro's one-man exhibition at the Whitechapel Art Gallery in 1963 brought him considerable critical attention, in large part due to the decision to exhibit his sculpture directly on the floor. At the time, the removal of the pedestal was revolutionary in terms of the relationship between the art object and the viewer. Caro was quickly regarded as a major figure for his role - both through his work and his teaching at St Martin's School of Art, London - in creating a new abstract school of British sculpture.
His practice was informed in large part by his strict, academic training at the Royal Academy, London, along with the time spent as Henry Moore's studio assistant in the 1950s. His 1950s figural works are clearly influenced by this relationship and indeed, this experience was no doubt formative for the subsequent development of Caro's artistic practice.
The New Art Centre has exhibited Anthony Caro's work many times and most recently, presented his sculpture in 2017 as part of Artist Boss, an exhibition featuring works by Caro and four of his studio assistants - Ian Dawson, John Gibbons, Guy Martin and John Wallbank. The aim of the Artist Boss project was to highlight the role of the artist's assistant in the story of twentieth century British sculpture.
Anthony Caro's sculpture has been exhibited internationally and major solo exhibitions include a retrospective at Tate in 2004-5, presentations at the Yale Center for British Art, Connecticut and a major exhibition of outdoor sculpture at Chatsworth, both in 2012, a 2013 show at the Museo Correr coinciding with the Venice Biennale and a solo show at the National Gallery in 2015.