AMERICAN SCULPTOR & PAINTER
Alexander Calder (July 22, 1898 – November 11, 1976) was an American sculptor known
both for his innovative mobiles (kinetic sculptures powered by motors or air currents) that embrace chance in their aesthetic, and static "stabiles" monumental public sculptures.
He didn't limit his art to sculptures; he also created paintings, jewelry, theatre sets and costumes.
Calder preferred not to analyze his work, saying, "Theories may be all very well for the artist himself, but they shouldn't be broadcast to other people." Although primarily known for his sculptures, Calder also created paintings and prints, miniatures (such as his famous Cirque Calder), theater set design, jewelry design, tapestries & rugs and political posters. He was honored by the US Postal Service with a set of five 32-cent stamps in 1998, and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, posthumously in 1977, after refusing to receive it from Gerald Ford one year earlier in protest of the Vietnam War.
Calder's work is in many permanent collections across the world. The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, has the largest body of work by Alexander Calder. Other museum collections include the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; the Museo Nacional Centro
de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; and the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. There are
two pieces on display in the Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Empire State Plaza Art Collection in Albany, NY.