Calder: Flying Dragon
This book was published on the occasion of the public installation of Alexander Calder’s Flying Dragon (1975) at Place Vendôme in Paris for the 2021 edition of FIAC Hors les Murs, which presents artworks in emblematic public spaces throughout the city. The installation marked the opening of Gagosian’s gallery at rue de Castiglione, which featured an exhibition dedicated to the history and importance of Flying Dragon, and was complemented by an exhibition of Calder’s sculptures and paintings at the rue de Ponthieu gallery. Among the last monumental sculptures realized by the artist, Flying Dragon exemplifies the visual dynamism of his work. Blending biomorphic form with architectonic scale, the sculpture’s elegant lines and vibrant color activate the space around it to suggest the presence of an otherworldly beast.
The bilingual (English/French) publication includes photographs of the installation at Place Vendôme and of the works in the two exhibitions, as well as relevant historical images and a timeline contextualizing Flying Dragon within an account of Calder’s activities in 1975. Following a preface by Larry Gagosian, an essay by Arnauld Pierre considers the importance of the stabile in Calder’s work, and a conversation between Gagosian director Serena Cattaneo Adorno and artist Sheila Hicks, who collaborated with Calder on a large-scale commission in 1975, provides further insight on the artist’s monumental works.