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Alexander Calder: The Paris Years 1926-1933 By Joan Simon and Brigitte Leal

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Alexander Calder: The Paris Years 1926-1933 By Joan Simon and Brigitte Leal
with contributions by Henry Petroski, Quentin Bajac, Carol Mancusi-Ungaro, Eleonora Nagy, Pepe Karmel, Annie Cohen-Soal, Arnauld Pierre and Alexander S.C. Rower

4to. pp. 304. profusely illustrated. bibliography. index. boards. (slight bump to upper right corner). New York: The Whitney Museum of American Art [in association with] Centre Pompidou & Yale University Press, [2008].

This catalogue was published on the occasion of an exhibition organized by Joan Simon and Brigitte Leal


ISBN-10: 0300126220 / ISBN-13: 9780300126228


In 1926, Alexander Calder (1898–1976) moved from New York to Paris and began to use time and motion as "materials" for animating line and space. Calder’s years in Paris––an understudied part of the artist’s career––is the focus of this marvelous publication.

A team of international scholars discusses Calder’s many innovations of this period, chief among them his abstract, motorized, and mobile works. They analyze the extended cast of Calder’s animated Circus, made in Paris between 1926 and 1931, and include previously unpublished photographs by Brassaï and Kertesz of Calder and this beloved performative sculpture. The essays critically explore the intellectual, cultural, and artistic milieu of Paris in the late 1920s and early 1930s and the contexts of Calder’s friendships with Miró, Mondrian, Duchamp, and Man Ray, among others. What emerges in this fascinating book is a nuanced and detailed understanding of how Calder’s distinctive career first took flight.