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Who is Google Doodle's Alexander Calder?


(CBS) - If you spent 15 minutes spinning today's Google Doodle, you aren't the only one. The interactive art piece is mesmerizing and the first doodle to use HTML 5. So who is honoree Alexander Calder?

He was an American artist who is credited for inventing mobile sculptures. Calder's most notable piece is the "Calder Circus," which are intricate pieces of miniatures that interact together, created from household materials like wires, wood and fabric. The art work was more of a show and a precursor to modern performance art.

After the "Calder Circus" caught the attention of the art world in the 1930s, the Philadelphia native went on to create his first kinetic sculpture. He created works of art that hadn't been seen before, using aluminum and wire, and liked the idea of using wind or a light touch to start the movement of the objects he pieced together.

The Calder Foundation explains that these "objects moved by systems of cranks and motors, and were dubbed "mobiles" by [famous French artist] Marcel Duchamp."

The whimsical artist went on to create larger projects like "La spirale" (Paris), "La grande vitesse" (Michigan) and "Flamingo" (Chicago). He passed away in 1976 at the age of 78.

Here's a video of Alexander Calder performing the "Calder Circus" in a 1955 film by Jean Painlevé.

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