I have avoided talking about the convoluted mass of red steel and coiled stairs that stands next to the Olympic stadium because I’m not sure how I feel about it, let alone how to talk about it. This project has a name: Orbit Tower, and was designed as a collaboration between Anish Kapoor and Cecil Balmond. Since it looks like the tower will be in virtually every aerial shot of the stadium, maybe you’d like to know what exactly it is. It’s a tower with viewing platforms. And, of course, it’s so much more.
“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” — Anish Kapoor
Undoubtedly many folks will participate in the project during the Olympics, and even more afterwards. Orbit tower is the tallest work of art in London. For a mere 15 pounds you can take an elevator to the top of the perplexing steel arcs look out across the city. If you can also see inside the stadium, the cost of the ticket may save you a hefty amount compared to the cost of a ticket to sit inside the stadium.