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Google logo remembers artist on his 113th birthday

googleCalder072211_optBY PAM LOBLEY
NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM

I love the Google logos. Google is my home page, and I see those logos every day, and they make me feel hip.

I know that Google is staffed with brainy, creative types. They’re young, they’re west coast; they don’t need an Advil when they do too much yard work. They have time to design daily logos full of wit and dash that make us think. They could just have the same old boring logo every day, as most companies do. But they keep it fresh.

Today’s is inspired by the artist Alexander Calder, because July 22 is his 113th birthday. Calder developed hanging structures with weighted parts so that the pieces moved and constantly transformed the sculpture. His mobiles hang in galleries all over the world, including the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. Calder, who died November 11, 1976, was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1977.

The Google Calder logo moves slowly when a Googler clicks and drags on part of the sculpture. A faint shadow below the search box moves in sync. It is soothing and playful at the same time.

My kids love the logos because sometimes they take a little figuring out, and when they get it, they feel smart. That’s part of the logo’s charm.

The Google Martha Graham logo also moved and transformed and was another of my favorites. I enjoy and admire both Martha Graham’s and Alexander Calder’s work, but I don’t take the opportunity to think about them often. The logos are like a little culture vacation in the middle the long work day. It gives your brain a chance to move in another direction.

If you want to learn more about Calder's life and works, visit the Calder Foundation. And now I need to get my brain to move in the direction of the vacuum cleaner.

Pam Lobley writes the “Now That’s Funny” column. Sign up for her mailing list at www.pamlobley.com.

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