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Alexander Calder
Derrière le Miroir No. 173 (Abstract IV)

1968

About

An original double page lithograph on smooth wove paper by American artist Alexander Calder (1898-1976) titled "Derrière le Miroir No. 173 (Abstract IV)", 1968. With centerfold as issued. Edition issued by Galerie Maeght for "Derrière le Miroir No. 173". Published by Maeght, Paris, October 1968. Text by Giovanni Cardente and Jacques Dupin. Sheet size: 15" x 22". Excellent condition. In October 1945, the French art dealer Aimé Maeght opens his art gallery at 13 Rue de Téhéran in Paris. His beginning coincides with the end of Second World War and the return of a number of exiled artists back to France. The magazine Derriere Le Miroir was created in October 1946 and published without interruption until 1982. Maeght's ambition in establishing his print shop and his publication magazine Derriere Le Miroir was to make available to a broader audience less expensive printed imagery by the artists of his time, many whom were represented by his Paris gallery. Its original articles and illustrations (mainly original color lithographs by the gallery artists) were famous at the time. The magazine covered only the artists exhibited by Maeght gallery either through personal or group exhibitions. Among them are (in alphabetical order): Henri-Georges Adam, Pierre Alechinsky, Bacon, Jean Bazaine, Georges Braque, Pol Bury, Alexander Calder, Marc Chagall, Roger Chastel, Eduardo Chillida, Alberto Giacometti, Vassily Kandinsky, Ellsworth Kelly, Fernand Léger, Lindner, Henri Matisse, Joan Miró, Jacques Monory, Pablo Palazuelo, Paul Rebeyrolle, Jean-Paul Riopelle, Saul Steinberg, Pierre Tal-Coat, Antoni Tapies, Raoul Ubac, Bram van Velde. Alexander Calder was born on July 22, 1898 in Lawnton, Pa. He attended the Art Students League, where he was influenced by artists of the Ash Can school. In 1926 he moved to Paris and developed his miniature circus. He is best known as the inventor of the mobile. His art was recognized with many large-scale exhibitions. He died in 1976.

Details

  • Condition
    Excellent.
  • Dimensions

    H 15 in. x W 22 in.

    H 38.1 cm x W 55.88 cm

  • Gallery location
    Charlottesville, VA
  • Reference number
    LU12122114493

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About Alexander Calder (Artist)

The American sculptor Alexander Calder is known as the father of the mobile, a moving artwork composed of delicately balanced sculptural forms suspended from the ceiling. Because his parents, both artists themselves, did not want him to suffer the hardships of trying to make a living in art, they encouraged the young Calder to study mechanical engineering at the Stevens Institute of Technology, in Hoboken, New Jersey. He worked a number of jobs, including as a hydraulic engineer and draftsman for the New York Edison Company, before deciding to pursue an artistic career. He never abandoned his engineering background, however, applying his understanding of gears and moving parts in all his artworks, from mechanical toys like the Cirque Calder (1931) to his free-standing abstract sculptures, called stabiles.


     In 1926, Calder moved to Paris and established a studio in the Montparnasse quarter. He began creating the many parts of his famous miniature circus from found materials, such as wire, string, cloth, rubber and cork. Designed to be transportable, Cirque grew to fill five suitcases over the years. Always interested in putting forms in motion, Calder also pioneered a new art form called wire sculptures, which he described as “drawings in space.” Like his famous mobiles, the wire sculptures were suspended so that they turned with any movement of the air, presenting different forms when viewed from different angles.


     In the 1950s, Calder returned to his roots in mechanical engineering, creating monumental abstract sculptures that verged on the architectural. He worked from loose gestural drawings like this preparatory sketch for his Man Stabile, from 1966. Throughout his career, he also worked as a set designer for the theater, as well as an illustrator and printmaker, producing vibrant, whimsical drawings for books and journals, such as this stunning lithograph of an elephant and two cats.

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