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(1898 - 1976)
The son of a painter and a sculptor, Calder’s first love was for engineering. He was born in Philadelphia and graduated from Stevens Institute of Technology at Hoboken, after which he worked as an engineer. He started taking lessons at the Art Students’ League in New York, which inspired him to make his first animated art in Paris. This piece was a miniature circus and it was shown in the Salon des Humoristes in 1927. While in Paris, he made steel wire sculptures like Josephine Baker (1926), which Arp called stabiles. Some of the sculptures were animated by hand or motor, as in the cases of Goldfish Bowl (1929) and Torpedo Shape Executing a Dance Movement (1932). In 1933, he returned to the United States to live on a farm in Connecticut, where he developed what Duchamp later called mobiles. His work from that point became alternations between mobiles and stabiles, and created Constellations, which was a harmony between the two. Calder returned to France in 1953,and made enormous sculptures in his studio, like the Hextopus (1955) and the Southern Cross (1963), which erected these sculptures in public places. Some of his other talents included painting in gouache and oil, as well as jewelry-making.