art530836_gallery_0 Alexander Calder, Untitled, 1976

The exhibition, which is on until September, is the largest outdoor collection of Calder's work ever to be seen in the West and pieces in the display span from 1956 to 1976.

art530834_gallery_0 Alexander Calder, Tripes, 1974

Sculpture by Alexander Calder features nine pieces on loan from both museums and the Calder Foundation and this is the only time and place all pieces will ever be displayed together.

Calder's grandson and chairman of the Calder Foundation, Alexander S.C. Rower has curated the exhibition in partnership with Alfred Pacquement, former director of the Musée National d’Art Moderne in Paris.

art530835_gallery_0 Alexander Calder, A Two-Faced Guy, 1969

The exhibition gives viewers the chances to see Calder's pieces in an organic space, the intention behind Calder's concepts as his mobiles were meant to be driven by natural forces. At first, Calder's mobiles were motorized, but he quickly realized that he could propel his works through ambient air currents.

3010B_525_Calder Alexander Calder (American, 1898-1976) Untitled (Standing Mobile), c. 1953

From the complete other end of Calder's ingenuity, a sculpture just 3 inches tall, will be going under the gavel at Skinner Inc on May, 19. Untitled (Standing Mobile) c.1953, beautifully showcases Calder's engineering skills, artistic genius and wit. The piece was commissioned from the artist by Betty Milton, by family descent to the current owner and is registered in the archives of the Calder Foundation. The piece comes from a very productive period for the sculptor. The year before Calder finished this piece, Calder was chosen to represent the United States in the 1952 Venice Biennale at which he won the grand prize for sculpture. That same year, he designed sets and costumes for the play Nuclea which opened in Paris, and he worked on the design for a fountain for architect Eero Saarinen's General Motors Techinical Center project in Michigan.

Throughout this period, Calder maintained a very high rate of production, working on large-scale sculpture commissions as well as small works like this untitled standing mobile.

Calder told an interviewer in Selden Rodman, Conversations with Artists (New York, 1957), "I want to make things that are fun to look at, that have no propaganda value whatsoever."

See the full catalog for Skinner Inc's May 19 auction here.

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