Alexander Calder and Contemporary Art: Form, Balance, Joy Exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA)

Alexander Calder and Contemporary Art: Form, Balance, Joy pairs the work of Alexander Calder with the work of seven contemporary artists whose practices are bound to Calder’s legacy as modern sculptor. Open June 26 – October 17, 2010.

While a well-known, even beloved figure, Calder has not previously been considered an important point of reference for contemporary artists. This is the first exhibition to explore Calder’s significance for an emerging generation of sculptors, reconsidering his influence and his innovation through a presentation of his own work alongside the work of contemporary artists.

The seven contemporary artists in this exhibition: Martin Boyce, Nathan Carter, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Aaron Curry, Kristi Lippire, Jason Meadows, and Jason Middlebrook, have taken important cues from Calder including a return to hand-on production, the creative reuse of materials, and explorations of form, balance, color, and movement. Combining rigorous concept with a renewed emphasis on formalism, the work of these artists prioritizes the visual and visceral qualities of sculpture. Both directly and indirectly influenced by Calder, all of the artists are looking towards modernist forms and ideas, challenging and recontextualizing what is for many a familiar art history.

The MCA’s in-depth holdings of Calder form the core of the presentation of his work, complemented by mobiles, standing mobiles, and stabiles drawn from Chicago area and national public and private collections. Calder’s work is mounted along with sculptures by the contemporary artists. Middlebrook is also undertaking a site-specific commission for the exhibition, creating a mobile which is planned to hang in the MCA’s atrium.

Organized by MCA Curator Lynne Warren, this exhibition is accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalogue co-published by the MCA and Thames & Hudson and will tour nationally.

Image: Alexander Calder – Untitled (prop for the ballet ‘Métaboles’), 1969. Sheet metal, wire, and paint, 137 1/2 x 118 in. Collection of Jon and Mary Shirley

Post a Reply

Your email address will not be published.