Artwork Details

Alexander Calder
American

1898–1976

The Blunt-Tailed Dog (Animobile)
1970
Medium
Painted sheet metal
Dimensions
33 1/2 x 22 inches
Location
Level 3, Gallery 7
Accession Number
2011.7
Credit
Gift of Miner and Mary Ann Keeler
Image Copyright
© Alexander Calder

About the Artwork

Alexander Calder was partial to animal sculpture all his life, at an early age sketching animals he saw at the circus and zoo. In 1926, he began work on his famous Cirque Calder, a portable, miniature circus of animals and entertainers made of wire and found objects. In the late 1960s, he returned to animals as subject, creating a new type of sculpture his wife, Louise, named animobile — a blend of the words animal and mobile, Calder’s earlier format of suspended, kinetic sculptures fashioned of painted metal and wire.

Blunt Tail Dog consists of an unmoving red body, with its blunt tail,” upon which rests a mobile” of shifting parts that wittily suggest eyes, ears, tongue, and head. Calder’s doggy is sweet, funny, and endearing — even irreverent in its eccentric shapes.