Soon after, he was invited to join Abstraction-Création, an influential group of artists (including Jean Arp, Mondrian, and Jean Hélion) with whom he had become friendly.
In the fall of 1931, a significant turning point in Calder's artistic career occurred when he created his first truly kinetic sculpture and gave form to an entirely new type of art.
He also began his association with the Pierre Matisse Gallery in New York with his first show in 1934.
James Johnson Sweeney, who had become a close friend, wrote the catalogue's preface.
The assemblage included diminutive performers, animals, and props he had observed at the Ringling Bros. Fashioned from wire, leather, cloth, and other found materials, was designed to be manipulated manually by Calder.
Every piece was small enough to be packed into a large trunk, enabling the artist to carry it with him and hold performances anywhere.
Word traveled about the inventive artist, and in 1928 Calder was given his first solo gallery show at the Weyhe Gallery in New York.Its first performance was held in Paris for an audience of friends and peers, and soon Calder was presenting the circus in both Paris and New York to much success.Calder's renderings of his circus often lasted about two hours and were quite elaborate.He instead enrolled at the Stevens Institute of Technology after high school and graduated in 1919 with an engineering degree.Calder worked for several years after graduation at various jobs, including as a hydraulics and automotive engineer, timekeeper in a logging camp, and fireman in a ship's boiler room.