Overly Wired

10/24/2008

And speaking of wire, I can’t believe I forgot to mention the master of wire forms, Alexander Calder. Check out the Calder exhibition (Alexander Calder: The Paris Years, 1926—1933) at The Whitney Museum on view through February 15, 2009.  A brief “official” history:

Alexander Calder (1898-1976), whose illustrious career spanned much of the 20th century, is the most acclaimed and influential sculptor of our time. Born in a family of celebrated, though more classically trained artists, Calder utilized his innovative genius to profoundly change the course of modern art. He began by developing a new method of sculpting: by bending and twisting wire, he essentially “drew” three-dimensional figures in space. He is renowned for the invention of the mobile, whose suspended, abstract elements move and balance in changing harmony. Calder also devoted himself to making outdoor sculpture on a grand scale from bolted sheet steel. Today, these stately titans grace public plazas in cities throughout the world.  Some of these major monumental sculpture commissions include: .125, a mobile for the New York Port Authority that was hung in Idlewild (now John F. Kennedy) Airport (1957); La Spirale, for UNESCO, in Paris (1958); Teodelapio, for the city of Spoleto, Italy (1962); Man, for the Expo in Montreal (1967); El Sol Rojo (the largest of all Calder’s works, at sixty-seven feet high) installed outside the Aztec Stadium for the Olympic Games in Mexico City; La grande vitesse, the first public art work to be funded by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) for the city of Grand Rapids, Michigan (1969); and Flamingo, a stabile for the General Services Administration in Chicago (1973).

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