The Calder project marks the first time that a space has been commissioned specifically to present the work of Alexander Calder. Designed by Herzog & de Meuron, the galleries and gardens will create opportunities for direct engagement with masterworks by Calder as well as Calder’s parents, Alexander Stirling Calder and Nanette Lederer Calder, and his grandfather, Alexander Milne Calder.
Alexander Calder was born in Philadelphia, and his connections to the city are grounded in the rich artistic lineage of his family. A trio of sculptures by three generations of Calders can already be found along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway: at the southeast end, atop City Hall, is Milne’s monumental statue William Penn (c. 1886–94); at the midpoint is Swann Memorial Fountain (1924) by Stirling; and at the northwest end is Calder’s monumental mobile The Ghost (1964), hanging in the main hall of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. This project celebrates and builds on that legacy.
The project is being spearheaded and supported by a group of Philadelphia philanthropists working in partnership with the Calder Foundation, including the Neubauer Family Foundation, The Pew Charitable Trusts, H.F. Lenfest, and an anonymous donor, as well as the City of Philadelphia and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Though the project is still in early planning stages, a substantial amount of the funds needed to build and endow the project has already been secured. Additional details on the funding and project will be shared in the coming months.
Architectural designs for the project are expected to be shared in late summer 2020, with groundbreaking anticipated in early 2021.
The site is located on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway between 21st and 22nd Streets, across from the Barnes Foundation and the Rodin Museum.