Arp, Calder, and Miro: Modern Masters from the Albright-Knox Art Gallery
Featuring a comprehensive array of fifty-two works across varied media by Jean (Hans) Arp (French, born Germany, 1886–1966), Joan Miró (Spanish, 1893–1983), and Alexander Calder (American, 1898–1976), this exhibition will highlight the work of three modern masters, who pushed color, line, and form beyond convention. Arp, Miró, and Calder converged early in their artistic careers. Calder, who left New York for France in 1926, first encountered Arp and Miró in Paris, an inspirational destination for artists and a vibrant center of music and dance. Paris was also the creative center for Surrealism—an art movement stressing the subconscious significance of imagery—and Surrealist theory in the visual arts, politics, and society. Calder, though not closely associated with Surrealism, was undoubtedly influenced by the movement’s key players during his time in Paris. It was Arp, in fact, who named Calder’s static constructions “stabiles,” and, in 1931, the Surrealist Marcel Duchamp suggested Calder call his whimsical, kinetic works “mobiles.” But Calder developed the closest friendship with Miró; the two bonded over discussions about Surrealist theory, and through shared interests and influences. These relationships, formed during a period in art history often referred to as “the greatest laboratory of modern art,” resulted in some of the most innovative visual iconographies of the twentieth century.