Skip to Main Content

Canceled—Calder: The Conquest of Space

A Conversation with Harry Cooper, Jed Perl, and Alexander S. C. Rower

Lectures and Book Signings

  • Sunday, May 17, 2020
  • 2:00 p.m.
  • East Building Auditorium
  • In-person

Harry Cooper, senior curator and head of modern and contemporary art, National Gallery of Art; Jed Perl, author of Calder: The Conquest of Space: The Later Years: 1940-1976, and contributor, the New York Review of Books; and Alexander S. C. Rower, Calder's grandson and chairman and president, Calder Foundation

The second half of Jed Perl’s two-volume biography of Alexander Calder tracks the artist’s career from his first monumental public sculptures to his comprehensive retrospective at the Whitney Museum of American Art. Calder: The Conquest of Space: The Later Years: 1940-1976 begins with World War II, when the artist and his wife Louisa opened their home to artists and writers, and ends with Calder’s death in 1976 at age seventy-eight. Perl performed a careful and vivid examination of Calder’s life based on unprecedented access to letters and papers as well as scores of interviews. He outlines the development of Calder’s radical sculptural imagination and highlights the artist’s significant contribution to the minimalist and kinetic art movements. On May 17, 2020, Perl joins Harry Cooper and Alexander S. C. Rower at the National Gallery of Art to discuss completing this second volume.