Kinetic art relies on movement to create interest. Objects can be made to gyrate and in so doing, create interesting shapes, patterns of light and reflections. This movement can be generated by machinery, as in Naum Gabo’s ‘Standing Wave’, or can simply rely on natural air currents to create motion. The artist Alexander Calder explored this artform to great effect through his hanging mobiles. These sculptures utilised a variety of materials such as sheet metal and iron wire. Abstract shapes attached to a wire framework allowed free-flowing movement. Watching the sculptures gently move can help relaxation and reduce stress levels. Visit to see more.


Make a Calder inspired mobile that can be hung from the ceiling in communal areas or bedrooms. Do this activity together to create one large sculpture or create smaller-scale ones that can hang in personal spaces. Using thick cardboard, cut out a variety of abstract shapes and paint them on both sides. Create a framework for the mobile using galvanised steel wire. Then, using a thinner wire, create arms that can be used to hang the abstract shapes from.


  • Galvanised steel wire
  • Flexible wire
  • Pre-cut card shapes or plastic pieces

Artist Inspiration: Alexander Calder, Naum Gabo