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Hammer Galleries to present Objects In Space: Léger, Miró, and Calder at TEFAF Maastricht
Fernand Léger, (French, 1881 - 1955), Objets dans l'Espace, 1931. Oil on canvas, 28 3/4 x 36 1/4 inches.
NEW YORK, NY.- Following the success of past TEFAF exhibitions such as Renoir (2011) and Modern Masters: Paris & Beyond (2012), Hammer Galleries continues its tradition of presenting curated, thematic exhibitions at TEFAF with its 2013 exhibition entitled - Objects In Space: Léger, Miró , Calder.

This exhibition explores how Fernand Léger (1881 – 1955), Joan Miró (1893 – 1983) and Alexander Calder (1898 – 1976), three of the most innovative artists of the twentieth century, grappled with the question of how to describe “motion” in art, or put another way, of how to describe “objects in space.” Taking its title from the superb Léger oil of 1931, Objets dans l’espace, the exhibition examines some of the parallel aesthetic interests and concerns that these three artists shared while working in Paris during the 1920s and 30s and as well as throughout the rest of their careers.

Léger and Miró, though coming from very different perspectives, would both attempt to give their “objects” a sense of “implied motion” in the two dimensional “space” of their canvases. Calder would radically “free motion,” by making the astonishing leap to “plastic objects” in actual three dimensional “space” and fourth dimensional “time,” thus inventing an entirely new art form, the “mobile.”

Calder met both Mondrian and Léger through the increasingly popular performances of his Cirque Calder and sought out a meeting with Miró. Calder’s wire sculpture brought him early success and fame in the Parisian art world, but in October of 1930 a visit to the studio of Mondrian (“the shock that started things”) would cause his abrupt conversion to abstraction, an event he would recount in his Autobiography and elsewhere. Years later, Calder would also add both Léger and Miró as important to his dramatic shift: “My first abstract things grew out of meeting Mondrian, Léger, Miró. At first I began to paint, but this lasted only a few weeks as I soon began to work with wire (with which I had long been conversant) and detached objects. - Alexander Calder, 1943.

Exclusively for its exhibition at TEFAF 2013, Hammer Galleries will present a rare oil painting by the Dutch Master Piet Mondrian (1872 -1944), Komposition II, with Red, 1926, on loan from a private collection. Also, on special loan from the Calder Foundation in New York, will be an early Calder oil (Untitled, 1930) completed shortly after Calder’s catalytic visit to Mondrian’s studio. This work was included in the highly praised exhibition Alexander Calder- The Great Discovery at Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, The Netherlands in 2012.

Featuring over fifteen paintings and five mobiles ranging in date from 1926 -1976, Objects In Space: Léger, Miró , Calder will be on view in Hammer Galleries booth (#449) at TEFAF Maastricht from March 14-25, 2013. The exhibition will be accompanied by an 88 page color catalog.

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March 1, 2013

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