Calder Alexander Alexander Calder, notes of biography, prints gallery Champetier
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Alexander Calder

"A suspension is a piece of poetry dancing in a ray of life and surprising."


Notes of biography

Alexander Calder was born in Philadelphia (United States) in 1898. He followed studies in mechanical engineering, before a teaching at the Art Students League of New York (1923-1925). He stayed in Paris (1926-1927) and went to the Academy de la Grande Chaumire. In 1926, he made small animals and other articulated characters in wire and he animated them by staging miniatures in a circus spectacle ("The circus of Calder").
His first personal exhibition was organized in 1928 (New York). In 1931, "Sandy" Calder exhibited with the group Abstraction-Creation. The artist created abstract objects moved by the air or by engines which make them turn endlessly, sticking on frail stalks many black or colored metal sheets which move "poetically". Marcel Duchamp baptized them "motives". Calder invented steel sculptures anchored on the ground, either black or either red sculptures to which Jean Arp gave the name of "stabiles". These abstract forms evoked an animal and plant kingdom. With time going on, "motives" and "stabiles" took more impressive dimensions. Calder used primary colors and is useful of engineering techniques for their realization. The artist invented a multitude of variants in his joinings and received very numerous State orders (Unesco in Paris, Olympic Stadium of Mexico City, etc.).
In 1952, Calder obtained the First prize of La Biennale de Venise. In 1974, Calder began the series of "Crags", hanging on "motives" to angles of "stabiles", and "Critters", black "stabiles" which seemed shadows of human forms.
At the same time, Calder created an important work on paper, etchings, lithographs mostly very colored.
His sculptured work, creative as well as poetic, his genius to find union between abstraction and evocation of the nature, made of Calder one of the biggest sculptors of XX century.
Alexander Calder died in New York in 1976.

Artists on display

The art and the artists display: proclamations, galleries, museums, personal or collective exhibitions. On walls or in shop windows, wise or rebels, posters warn, argue, show. Some were specially conceived by an artist for such or such event, other, colder, have only the letter.

Some were created in lithographic technic, most are simple offset reproductions. They are many those who like collecting these rectangles of paper, monochrome or in games of colours, in matt paper or brilliant, with many words or almost dumb.

We are happy also to be able to greet, by this pages, mythical galleries as those of Denise René, Louis Carré, Claude Bernard, Berheim Jeune, Maeght, Pierre Loeb and others.


Complete work(s)

Complete work(s)
Non ralis ce jour All the complete works

Bibliographic track and more

To read about the artist :
  • Calder , Fondation Maeght, 1969
  • Calders Universe , Whitney Museum, New York, 1976
  • Alexander Calder : Sach e Roxbury 1961-1965, E. Mulas, Ed. St. Milas, 1982
  • Calder intime , D. Marchesseau, Solange Thierry, 1989
  • Alexander Calder - Die grossen Skulpturen., D. Abadie et P. Hulten, Ed. Cantz, 1993
  • Alexander Calder , J.M. Marter, University Press, Cambridge, 1997
  • Alexander Calder, 1898-1976, Collectif, Ed. National Galleryof art, 1998
  • Alexander Calder, les annes parisiennes : 1926-1933, collectif, Ed. C. Pompidou, 2009
  • Alexander Calderbume, collectif, Fondation Beyeler, Ed. Hatje Cantz, 2013
  • Alexander Calder : performing sculpture, A. Smith et A. Coxon, Ed. Tate pub., 2015
To read from the artist :
  • Calder, autobiographie , Maeght Editeur, 1972
Website :

More :

Art movements

+ ABSTRACTION-CREATION / 1931-1938 / Etienne Bothy, Frantisek Kupka, Piet Mondrian, Sophie Taeuber-Arp, Georges Vantongerloo, etc.
+ MODERN SCULPTURE / 1930-1970 / William Kenneth Armiage, Constantin Brancusi, Anthony Caro, Naum Gabo, Pablo Gargallo, Isamu Noguchi, etc.
All art movements

See & discover

Beyond works currently in stock, it seemed to me useful to combine business with pleasure by letting you discover others works by artists in my gallery. These artworks, now sold or removed from our website, have been in our stock in the past.

These pages will undoubtedly make it possible for some of you to associate an image with its title or the other way round, for others it will be a good time to discover more on such and such artist. For the sake of confidentiality – the pieces being no longer available – we won't display neither their numbering or their price. For whatever reason, make sure to visit this amazing art database with to date 6441 online works just for your pleasure! Michelle Champetier

See & discover