Alexander Calder began introducing moving parts into his sculpture in 1931. Suspended Composition of Small Leaves (Four Red Spots) is an example from a body of work that extends mainly horizontally. This contrasts to his mobiles that have a more vertical composition. These sculptures should hang high over the viewer's head. Similar to other mobiles from this time, Calder pierced the elements in the composition for reasons involving the sculpture's physical and visual weight. Additionally, he wanted to enhance the sense of transparency, animate the surface as well as physically balance the work. Calder chooses a limited pallet of black, white and red to encourage structural and formal clarity. All in all, Calder was interested in variety, he wrote: 'Disparity in form, colour, size, weight, motion, is what makes a composition. . . . It is the apparent accident to regularity which the artist actually controls by which he makes or mars a work'.
c/o Pictoright Amsterdam/Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam




Production date

ca. 1947


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137 x 135cm.


painted aluminium and steel wire

Object number

BA 163