This work is registered in the archives of the Calder Foundation, New York, under application number A26050.
The three examples of work being offered from the Estate of Lonie Parsons demonstrates the remarkable breadth and originality of Alexander Calder's work. He was adept at taking seemingly ordinary objects, such as pieces of discarded wire or ubiquitous metal containers, and turning them into clever and whimsical objects that demonstrated not only his skill as a worker of metal, but also his ingenuity as an artist. The artist's Fish Light Fixture from 1950 demonstrates how Calder could turn a single sheet of metal into both a practical object, but also one of grace and beauty. The fish motif had been a particular favorite of the artist since his early days as an artist. In the winter of 1945-46 Peggy Guggenheim, the New York Socialite and art collector, commissioned Calder to make her a silver bed head for her apartment in New York. Calder chose to craft for her a magical, shimmering depiction of an underwater garden. He included two simple fish motifs in the bottom left of the work, closest to where Peggy Guggenheim would have entered the room. In an added touch of whimsy, the fish were not part of the work itself, but attached to it by thin wires, which meant that it would move and shimmer with every gust of wind or each time someone entered or left the room. Peggy Guggenheim became particularly fond of Calder's work containing his fish motif. In a similar manner, the shadow caused by this light fixture causes the image to dance across any surface upon which it falls.
The other two objects, Ashtray and Bottle Stopper, provide ample evidence of Calder's mind at work. As an artist he was always keen explore ways to expand his artistic repertoire and his studios to Roxbury and Saché, France were filled with examples of his ingenious creations that he fashioned out of pieces of metal that he had in his studio. His ability to turn pieces of metal into objects of beauty is legendary, objects which would often give as cherished gifts to family and close friends. Lonie Parsons was a close friend and neighbor of the Calders in Roxbury and as a creative person herself, she would spend many hours with Calder in his studio watching him at work and discussing his artistic process. He gave these three works to her as a mark of their friendship.