Alexander Calder embodied a spirit of play.
He invented the whimsical mobile and created a fantastic traveling circus from cork, wire, buttons, scraps of fabric, wood and paper. He breathed life into his work with boundless imagination.He packed his clever circus in 5 amazing suitcases and traveled back and forth between Paris and New York delighting audiences young and old. When he was a child his artistic parents encouraged him to experiment with shapes and motion. As art and music is being cut from public schools I'm passionate about encouraging young minds to stretch their artistic muscles like Sandy did.
|Sandy's Circus and The Calder Game|
I worked in my studio last week to assemble an art salon worthy of their creations. Visiting local thrift shops I recycled large white sheets into canvas for Calder inspired graphics. These were used to transform their classroom into a gallery that resembled a circus tent. Using cardboard and paint I created fantastic animals including a leaping red bull and seal that juggled beach balls.
|Juggling seal made from painted cardboard|
I remember taking my son to the National Gallery of Art and we were fascinated by the shapes and shadows of Calder's mobiles and sheet metal animals. I cut circus forms out of painted cardboard and hot-glued them to sturdy plastic straws so kids could play with shape and scale.
|Playing with shape and scale in the shadow theatre|
|Paintings on white sheets pay tribute to Calder's wire sculptures|
|Getting lost in a forest of whimsical mobiles created by children.|
Vintage travel stickers were pasted on old suitcases
in the background paying tribute to the traveling circus.
A fantastical flea circus performed in the Calder Salon on Art Night. Children approached me in wide-eyed wonder to see the beauty of their own sculptures and marvel at their classroom changed in just one afternoon by the magic of art.