Alexander Calder

Alexander Calder was an American sculptor and painter born in 1898 in Lawnton, Pennsylvania. In 1919, he received an engineering degree from Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, New Jersey and from 1923 to 1925, he attended the Art Students League, New York. He lived and worked mostly in the United States and in France. He died in 1976 in New York city.

 

Calder is widely considered to be one of the most important American sculptors of the 20th century. He is best known for innovative kinetic sculptures powered by air currents, the "mobiles" and his colorful, whimsical abstract monumental sculptures, or "stabile". Although primarily known as a sculptor, Calder was a prodigious artist with a restless creative spirit, whose diverse practice included painting, mostly in gouache, and printmaking, miniatures (such as his famous Cirque Calder), children's book illustrations, theater set design, jewelry design, tapestries and rugs, and political posters. 

 

Calder's public commissions are on view in cities all over the world and his work has been the subject of numerous museum exhibitions, including the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. (1998, traveled to San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, California); The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C. (1998–99); Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford (2000); Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (2000); Iwaki City Art Museum, Japan (2000, traveled to The Museum of Modern Art, Japan; Hokkaido Obihiro Museum of Art, Japan; The Museum of Art, Japan; Hiroshima Prefectural Art Museum, Japan; Nagoya City Art Museum, Japan); Storm King Art Center, New York (2001–03); Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao (2003, traveled to Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, through 2004); Foundation Beyeler, Switzerland (2004, traveled to Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C., through 2005); Los Angeles County Museum of Art, California (2013); Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam (2014); Fondation Beyeler, Basel (2014); Museo Jumex, Mexico City (2015); and Pulitzer Arts Foundation, Saint Louis (2015). 

Calder with 21 feuilles blanches (1953), Paris, 1954 Photograph by Agnès Varda © Agnès Varda

SELECTED WORKS

Alexander Calder Black butterfly1969

Gouache and ink on paper

75,2 x 109,2 cm | 29.6 x 43 in

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Alexander Calder Mirobolant1974

Gouache and ink on paper

74 x 110,5 cm | 29.1 x 43.5 in

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Alexander Calder Rocher au coeur rouge1974

Painted metal and wire

108 x 111 x 68,5 cm | 42.5 x 43.7 x 27 in

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Alexander Calder The Red Crescent1969

Sheet metal, rod and paint

60 x 225 x 66 cm | 23.6 x 88.6 x 26 in

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Alexander Calder Untitled, circa1966

Gouache and ink on paper

71,5 x 104,5 cm | 28.1 x 41.1 in

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Alexander Calder The red stag1973

Steel metal & paint

98,4 x 37,1 x 66 cm | 38.7 x 14.6 x 26 in

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Alexander Calder Enseigne de Lunettes1976

Painted metal

98 x 142 x 41,9 cm | 38.6 x 55.9 x 16.5 in

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Alexander Calder Black heart1971

sheet metal and paint

59,7 x 33 x 25,4 cm | 23.5 x 13 x 10 in

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Alexander Calder Good shot1974

Gouache and ink on paper

109,5 x 74,9 cm | 43.1 x 29.5 in

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Alexander Calder Les Tropiques1972

Gouache on paper

74,9 x 109,8 cm | 29.5 x 43.2 in

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Alexander Calder Untitled1969

Gouache and ink on paper

74,9 x 109,2 cm | 29.5 x 43 in

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Alexander Calder Illuminée1970

Gouache on paper

74 x 107 cm | 29.1 x 42.1 in

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Alexander Calder Red Octopus1971

Gouache on paper

75 x 109 cm | 29.5 x 42.9 in

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Alexander Calder Double Humpbacked Crinkly1970

standing mobile sheet metal, wire and paint

45,7 x 110,5 x 86,4 cm | 18 x 43.5 x 34 in

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