Art: Motion Man

In Manhattan's Pierre Matisse Gallery, critics and gallery-goers gravely inspected a number of gangling contraptions. Made up of string, wire, metal rods, colored wooden balls, sheet metal, the objects delicately bobbled, jiggled, woggled, teetered and tottered on their moorings. Some were powered by tiny electric motors, others needed a gentle push to set them going. These were "Mobiles." There were also "Stabiles"—a fantastic, animal-like limb from a tree; and the William Paley Radio Trophy of stainless steel cones surmounted by wires. These stayed perfectly still. Motionless or jiggly, they were all creations of Alexander ("Sandy") Calder, a hulking, greying, boyish...

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