December 25, 2014

Alexander Calder Christmas Trees

calder_christmas_tree_soth.jpg

In 1942 Alexander Calder was asked by a nurse friend to make some things to cheer up wounded soldiers convalescing in a Staten Island military hospital. One of those things: this awesome Christmas tree, cut from a tin can.

I was reminded of it last week when the Guggenheim posted a photo of another tree Calder made a little later, this time with pears and a partridge in it, for James Johnson Sweeney's 1944 book, Three Young Rats and Other Rhymes.

Calder_12_days_of_christmas_gugg.jpg

The Guggenheim has more images, some background, and a couple of copies of Three Young Rats in their library, but what they don't mention is that it was republished by MoMA in 1946, and has been reissued in various formats over the years, to suit every collector's budget.

From all the folks at Daddy Types, or at least from those I've heard from today, we wish you and your families a joyous and peaceful Christmas Day.

Alexander Calder Tin Can Christmas Tree [greg.org]
Alexander Calder's Three Young Rats and Other Rhymes [guggenheim.org]
Wade through all the various editions of Three Young Rats and Other Rhymes on Amazon, from $9-$1,725 [amazon]

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