Monday, August 19, 2013

Calder's women

I've been avoiding this web-space for a long time, a couple of you will notice. Only because there are so many projects in my hands right now, big ones and time-consuming ones, and it feels indulgent and almost ridiculous to finish something here (even a something as small as this) without finishing anything in the material world first.

But I'm on vacation now, in a land of slippery words that won't stick to my tongue, and everyone, they're so beautiful and kind, speaks sweetly to me in English as I fumble along with my camera and granny sunglasses. So, indulged and ridiculous, here I am now giving you Calder's women, who have been waiting in my queue of unfinished posts to be revealed for some time actually.

Did you know Calder designed jewelry? I didn't until I visited the Met once as a college student escaping the anonymity of the great world outside and looking for something small and speaking in a whisper to only me, the way art does. And then there was Calder, who I thought I knew because of the mobiles (which I love), but here were these pieces I'd never seen, being worn by some of my heroes.

First is Anjelica Huston looking formidable (in the French and English senses) in The Jealous Husband, that's the name of the piece (a bit literal, but still I like it). Next is Margaret Schevill in another piece whose name I don't know. But it reminds me of music somehow, maybe because she's wearing it the way I would position my violin for a gypsy song. And last is Georgia O'Keefe wearing a brooch and looking gentle and knowing in front of those rough rocks.

What I loved about the jewelry, apart from aesthetically, was that Calder would throw these fantastic parties where guests would wear the pieces. Or maybe one of his rich socialite friends would throw a party, and some of the artist's besties would appear in pieces made just for them. Whatever the circumstances, just imagine champagne, cigarette holders, and characters literally making spectacles of themselves. I keep a collection of themed parties that I'll host before I die, and this is one of them, maybe the next housewarming (eh, Aubrey?)..

Also if you haven't seen it, next time you're in the UES, drop by the Whitney and have a look at Calder's Circus, it's joy.