Mark di Suvero: Steel Like Paper, Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas, TX

January 28 - August 27, 2023

Mark di Suvero (American, born China, 1933) has long been lauded as one of the most significant sculptors of the past 60 years, renowned for monumental, abstract, steel constructions that grace urban plazas, bucolic sculpture parks, and public spaces throughout the world.  Industrial studios in Long Island City, New York and Petaluma, California support the creation of these large-scale works, as well as nurture his practice on a more intimate scale.  The exhibition at the Nasher focuses on the artist’s studio practice over the course of his more than six-decade career, surveying the more intimately and modestly scaled sculptures in parallel with his energetic and rarely seen drawings. Featuring 30 sculptures ranging in size from hand-held to monumental and more than 40 drawings and paintings spanning the artist’s career, Mark di Suvero: Steel Like Paper reveals the artist’s intimate studio practice that yields the power of his monumental vision.

In reference to the monumental works and his studio practice, di Suvero notes that, for him, plates of steel are like sheets of white paper, suggesting a facility, intimacy, malleability, and limitless potential rarely associated with his obdurate materials. The artist has pursued a largely improvisatory process throughout his career, working on multiple objects at once, occasionally allowing compositions to develop slowly over many years, and embracing chance and surprise discoveries, even when working with massive materials, large equipment, and crews of assistants. Drawing, painting, and making smaller sculptures provide opportunities to explore ideas on his own. The drawings frequently capture an initial blast of inspiration and often exhibit the freedom and dynamism also apparent in his larger sculptures. Smaller constructions perch, balance, twirl, and unfold, evincing whimsy and wonder, which also energize the monumental assemblages. The sense of play apparent in the smaller works is a constant in di Suvero’s practice and harkens back to the artist’s first forays into public sculpture, making swings and play sculptures for friends, art patrons, and neighborhood children alike. Such egalitarianism serves as a core personal foundation for the artist and finds expression in his public sculptures as well as his lifelong dedication to social justice.

Organized by the Nasher Sculpture Center, the exhibition is the most extensive survey of his work in over 30 years and the largest US museum exhibition since his first at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1975. In recognition of the long friendship the artist shared with Nasher Sculpture Center founders Raymond and Patsy Nasher, the exhibition takes place as part of the museum’s celebration of its 20th year.


Mark di Suvero: Steel Like Paper is made possible by leading support from the Texas Commission on the Arts and Nancy A. Nasher and David J. Haemisegger. Generous support is provided by the Sidney E. Frank Foundation. Additional support is provided by the Dallas Tourism Public Improvement District (DTPID). Generous support for the exhibition catalogue is provided by Paula Cooper Gallery.

Beatrice Caracciolo & Mark di Suvero, Paula Cooper Gallery, Palm Beach, FL

April 14 - May 15, 2022
An exhibition of sculpture and works on paper by Beatrice Caracciolo and Mark di Suvero presents drawing in two and three dimensions. Caracciolo is known primarily for large-scale drawings and di Suvero for monumental sculpture. Here, the artists’ work across both mediums demonstrates their shared propensity for forceful and expressive lines, uninhibited improvisation, and a breadth of techniques and materials.

Alternately working from historical sources, from life, or from her imagination, Caracciolo’s drawings present scenes of nature and antiquity, abstracted through controlled yet delicate marks. In the current exhibition, Caracciolo will show works from two ongoing series, all completed in 2021. The Combattere drawings are based on paintings by eighteenth-century Italian artist Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo of the stock character Pulcinella engaged in a fight. Tiepolo’s forms hover beneath the surface of Caracciolo’s works, enhanced by her spontaneous markings and the collaged paper elements that add texture and depth. The Esistenza series is more representational, delighting in the dramatic forms found in nature. Caracciolo was influenced by the philosophical tradition of seeking spiritual transcendence in a sublime landscape, and took particular inspiration from Chinese calligraphy and painting.

Mark di Suvero’s sculpture combines the roughness of industrial materials with a gestural quality reminiscent of three-dimensional drawing, a metaphor emphasized here by the ink and pencil studies on the surrounding walls. Tabletop works with kinetic or interchangeable elements contradict the weight of their titanium, steel, and bronze parts, while floor-bound sculptures encapsulate the issues at the core of di Suvero’s larger work, namely the intensely physical handling of metal, the contrast between mass and weightlessness, and the balance that results from the intersection of multidirectional angular and rounded shapes. The drawings are meditative rather than preparatory, capturing, in the artist’s words, “the memory of an idea and how to transform this idea into a sculpture…they are the map of my thinking. Feeling in ink.”

Beatrice Caracciolo (b. 1955, São Paulo, Brazil) is an Italian artist based in Paris. Recent one-person exhibitions include Innocenti at Paula Cooper Gallery (2020); Créer en soi le dragon de feu, at the Temple Collection in Beijing (2016); Attraversare Il Fuoco at Almine Rech Gallery in Paris (2013); … pour que passe enfin mon torrent d’anges at the Château de Haroué in Haroué, France (2012); and Tumulti at the Académie de France à Rome, Villa Medici (2010). Works by the artist are in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Morgan Library, New York; the Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven; the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris; and the Centre Pompidou, Paris.

Mark di Suvero (b. 1933, Shanghai, China) first came to international prominence in 1975 with a display of his work in the Jardin des Tuileries in Paris and a major retrospective that same year at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, which was accompanied by a citywide exhibition of large-scale works. The artist has had acclaimed international exhibitions in Nice (1991), Venice (1995, at the 46th Venice Biennale), Paris (1997), Governors Island, NY (2011), and San Francisco (2013), among many others. His numerous accolades include the 2000 International Sculpture Center’s Lifetime Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award, the 2010 National Medal of Arts awarded by President Barack Obama, the 2010 Medal of the Archives of American Art, and the 2013 American Academy of Arts and Letters Gold Medal. His works appear permanently installed in public spaces all over the world. The artist currently lives and works in New York and in Petaluma, California.

Mark di Suvero, Tasende Gallery, La Jolla, CA

April 9 - June 25, 2022

A Drawing Show, Paula Cooper Gallery, Palm Beach, FL

December 18, 2021 – January 24, 2022

Paula Cooper Gallery is pleased to present a selection of modern and contemporary drawings and exceptional works on paper dating from the late nineteenth century to the present day. Treasures by canonical European and American artists will accompany exquisite drawings by gallery artists.

Artists in the exhibition: Terry Adkins, Carl Andre, Lee Bontecou, Jonathan Borofksy, Cecily Brown, Beatrice Caracciolo, Paul Cezanne, Bruce Conner, Willem de Kooning, Jay DeFeo, Beauford Delaney, Mark di Suvero, Luciano Fabro, Robert Grosvenor, Philip Guston, Eva Hesse, Hans Hofmann, Wassily Kandinsky, Ellsworth Kelly, Franz Kline, Sherrie Levine, Sol LeWitt, Lee Lozano, Agnes Martin, John McLaughlin, Robert Motherwell, David Novros, Claes Oldenburg, Jackson Pollock, Richard Pousette-Dart, Robert Rauschenberg, Ad Reinhardt, Robert Ryman, Joel Shapiro, David Smith, Rudolf Stingel, Atsuko Tanaka, Alma Thomas, Bob Thompson, Cy Twombly, Andy Warhol.

Mark di Suvero: History and Its Shadow, San Luis Obispo Museum of Art, CA

August 14 - November 7, 2021

Every few years, the waves of our beloved coastline glow bright blue – a phenomenon caused by single-celled organisms, bioluminescent dinoflagellate, who release a flash of light in response to perceived threats. This light’s purpose is twofold: to beckon other creatures who might deter the predator, and to startle the perceived threat and scare it away. For the human viewer, the luminescence appears to be both within and on the surface of the water, an experience both otherworldly and deeply familiar.

This same glowing and familiar light is present throughout History and Its Shadow, an exhibition of paintings and sculpture by celebrated artist Mark di Suvero. While maintaining an active sculptural practice, in the past five years di Suvero has begun making paintings textured with phosphorescent and fluorescent paint. These paintings are both visible in the light of day and glow in darkness, retaining light for up to fifteen minutes when activated with black light. This series of paintings are brilliantly abstract and particularly powerful when exhibited in relationship with the other examples of di Suvero’s extensive practice.

In addition to paintings, History and Its Shadow also includes three sculptures. The Triplets are consistent in their form and design — utilizing three intersecting plates. Two hanging works are made using foam core board, a material commonly used in photography mounting and architecture classes. Di Suvero paints the sculptures with the same phosphorescent paint he uses in his paintings, giving the works multiple perspectives for the viewer. Like many of di Suvero’s large sculptures, these kinetic works gently and subtly sway with the wind as bodies move throughout the space. The materials di Suvero utilizes speak to the accessibility of the creativity available to us all. Historically making large-scale sculptures with materials complex and costly to find and transport, di Suvero now intentionally makes work daily with the materials that are at hand, ones that are easy and affordable for anyone to source. The model for the Triplets is also included in the show, made out of titanium — a material both very strong and very light, and resistant to corrosion.

Outside on the Mission Plaza lawn, the Museum presents Mamma Mobius, a transcendent sculpture that pays homage to the mobius strip, a ring of infinity. Mamma Mobius is brought to you by the City of SLO’s Art in Public Places program. The works included in this exhibition ground the viewers in between the past and the future; our consistent evolution, in between history and its shadow.

All images and text ©Mark di Suvero and Spacetime C.C. 2022