Red Fish Tail

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Alexander Calder

American, 1898 - 1976

Red Fish Tail, 1965

  • On View

Painted sheet metal and wire

Dimensions: 60 × 120 in. (152.4 × 304.8 cm)

Gift of Mrs. Aimee Mott Butler in memory of her mother, Ethel Harding Mott, 1967.1

Alexander Calder created abstract works, whether large or small, fixed or mobile, that possess a gentle grace and timeless quality. His sculptures reveal a love for modern materials but also embody contemporary ideas of motion, chance, and balance. Using a relatively limited visual vocabulary and a palette of primary colors, Calder achieved an enormous variety in his work, ranging from tiny tabletop pieces to large outdoor works. By the mid-1940s, he had advanced the concept by suspending mobiles from the ceiling. Red Fish Tail exemplifies his mature work, revealing how Calder's engineering mastery and sense of balance transforms what could be a two-dimensional work to a three-dimensional drawing in the air.

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