Alexander Calder

A modern definition of space: Calder sculpture on show at Van de Weghe Fine Art

Calder continues to mobilise the market

The work of the late Modernist sculptor Alexander Calder seems to be flavour of the month. First we had Pace’s booth entirely devoted to the artist at the ADAA art show and now this formidable exhibition (until 23 May) at Van de Weghe includes seven Calder mobiles and stabiles dating mainly from the 1940s and 50s. The works are alternately spritely and monumental and play brilliantly off one another, so that the highly energised negative space plays as great a role in this focused show as the sculptures themselves. The best thing about Calder’s mobiles is, of course, the fact they are activated by human presence; the more people are in the gallery, therefore, the more the mobiles spin and swirl, creating a kind of visual music. The largest piece on view—the massive, 13 x 24 foot piece Calder began in 1954 and completed roughly 20 years later—squats in the back gallery dangling mobile elements from the strong arms that jut from its thick trunk anchored to a study steel base (right).

Originally appeared in The Art Newspaper as 'A modern definition of space: Calder sculpture'

Appeared in The Art Newspaper Archive, 135 April 2003