Calder and Abstraction: From Avant-Garde to Iconic
One of the most important artists of the twentieth century, Alexander Calder revolutionized modern sculpture. Alexander Calder and Abstraction, with significant cooperation from the Calder Foundation, explores the artist’s radical translation of French Surrealist vocabulary into American vernacular. His most iconic works, coined by Marcel Duchamp as mobiles, are kinetic sculptures in which flat pieces of painted metal, connected by wire, move delicately in the air, propelled by motors or air currents. His later stabiles are monumental structures, whose arching forms and massive steel planes continue his engagement with dynamism and daring innovation. Although this will be his first museum exhibition in Los Angeles, Calder holds a significant place in LACMA’s history: the museum commissioned a major work by him for the building’s opening in 1965. This exhibition features installation design by architect Frank O. Gehry, and is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue with essays by exhibition curator Stephanie Barron as well as scholars Ilene Fort, Aleca Le Blanc, Jed Perl, and Harriet Senie.
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Organized by The Los Angeles County Museum of Art, in cooperation with the Calder Foundation, New York.
Image: Alexander Calder, Gibraltar, 1936, lignum vitae, walnut, steel rods, and painted wood, 51 7/8 x 24 ¼ x 11 3/8 inches, The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of the artist, 847.1966.a-b. © 2013 Calder Foundation, New York / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, digital image © 2013 The Museum of Modern Art/Licensed by SCALA/Art Resource, NY. Reproduction, including downloading of ARS works is prohibited by copyright laws and international conventions without the express written permission of Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.