Nasher Museum of Art Presents 'Alexander Calder and Contemporary Art'

New Exhibition Opens Feb. 16

Alexander Calder, Four Boomerangs, c. 1949. Painted sheet metal and steel wire 39 x 63 inches diameter. Collection Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. Gift of Ruth Horwich (1991.92). © 2011 Calder Foundation, New York / Artists Rights Society (ARS), N

An exhibition that provides a fresh perspective on modern sculptor Alexander Calder (1898-1976) and his influence on a new generation of artists will be presented at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University beginning next week.

"Alexander Calder and Contemporary Art: Form, Balance, Joy" pairs 34 master works by Calder with work by seven young artists: Martin Boyce, Nathan Carter, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Aaron Curry, Kristi Lippire, Jason Meadows and Jason Middlebrook. The Nasher Museum is the fourth and final venue for the exhibition, which will be on view from Feb. 16 to June 17.

"We know and love Calder as the inventor of the mobile, and for his legacy as a modern sculptor," said Kimerly Rorschach, Mary D.B.T. and James H. Semans Director of the Nasher Museum. "This is the first exhibition to explore Calder's influence on an exciting new generation of artists. Visitors will have a rare chance to see their work side by side with that of Calder, to compare the creative use of materials to define space and explore form, balance, color and movement."

"Alexander Calder and Contemporary Art" will fill two gallery pavilions. A third pavilion features the installation, "Angels, Devils and the Electric Slide: Outsider Art from the Permanent Collection," and includes work by artists who, like Calder, incorporate found objects and unusual materials in their work. "Outsider Art" is on view through July 8.

The exhibition will be complemented by programs at the Nasher Museum, including two Free Family Day events; weeklong residencies with artists Kristi Lippire and Jason Middlebrook; a talk by Duke engineering professor Henry Petroski; free screenings of the 1955 film by Jean Pavileve, "Le Grand Cirque Calder 1927," and 1961 documentary by Carlos Vilardebo, "Calder's Circus;" gallery tours; teacher workshops and other programs.

The museum also plans to reach out to visitors from the science and engineering communities with two free evening events for corporate sponsors of the exhibition and their employees, including all employees of Research Triangle Park, courtesy of The Research Triangle Park. Visitors will have the chance to create their own mobiles in the Mary D.B.T. Semans Great Hall. "Alexander Calder and Contemporary Art" is organized by Lynne Warren, a curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA), Chicago. The exhibition traveled to the Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas and the Orange County Museum of Art in California. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue co-published by the MCA and Thames & Hudson.

Admission to "Alexander Calder and Contemporary Art" is $10 for adults ($15 with guided tour), $5 for children 7 to 17, and free for children 6 and under. Admission is free for Duke students (one per I.D.) and for Nasher Museum members (two free tickets per day per membership). Admission is $5 for non-Duke students, $5 for faculty and staff with a Duke ID and $5 for Duke Alumni Association members with an ID card. Tickets are available by calling (919) 684-4444 or clicking on Additional information is available at

"Alexander Calder and Contemporary Art: Form, Balance, Joy" is organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. The exhibition is sponsored by The Northern Trust Company. Lead foundation support is provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art and the Chicago Community Trust. Major support for the exhibition is provided by The Kenneth and Anne Griffin Foundation. Additional support is provided by Margot and George Greig, Anne and Burt Kaplan, Ruth Horwich, The Broad Art Foundation, Gagosian Gallery, Lindy Bergman, Helyn Goldenberg, Sara Szold, and The Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation.

At the Nasher Museum, major individual support for the exhibition is provided by Frances P. Rollins, Marilyn M. Arthur, Trent and Susan Carmichael, Drs. Victor and Lenore Behar, Kathi and Stephen Eason, and Mindy and Guy Solie. Additional support is provided by Deborah DeMott, Nancy Palmer Wardropper, The E. T. Rollins Jr. and Frances P. Rollins Fund, Jo and Peter Baer, Paula and Eugene Flood, Pepper and Donald Fluke, Kelly Braddy Van Winkle and Lance Van Winkle, Carolyn Aaronson, Diane Evia-Lanevi and Ingemar Lanevi, Caroline and Arthur Rogers, Angela O. Terry, and Richard Tigner. Major corporate and grant support for the exhibition is provided by the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation, NetApp and the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources. Additional support is provided by Carolina Biological Supply Company, Duke's Pratt School of Engineering, Parker and Otis, The Research Triangle Park, Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society, Clinical Ambassador, American Scientist magazine, and Tech Shop.