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Alexander Calder's hanging mobiles were mostly constructed of aluminum sheet metal, and steel wire. He used simple hand tools such as wire cutters, sheet metal snips, flat jawed pliers, files, and other metal working tools to make them. Sometimes he would join pieces together by using metal rivets. The mobiles were typically painted by hand using a brush and oil based paint. Calder constructed his mobiles by first cutting out random abstract shapes from the sheet metal, filing the edges to smooth them, and then laying out and arranging the pieces in different patterns until he found one that he liked. Then he would connect the pieces together with wire, starting with the bottom pieces first, and then moving upwards adding new "branches", carefully balancing each new piece as he went along.

Calder also created huge monolithic sculptures that were known as "stabiles". For these, he would make a small scale model by hand, and then work with contractors experienced in welding and heavy metal forming to create the large sculpture. After the sculpture was completed, it would be disassembled and shipped to the installation site where it would be re-assembled under Calder's supervision.

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Q: What was Alexander Calder's technique?
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