Station: [36] Mark di Suvero, Racine du Naos, 1996


Take a walk around this radiantly red metal sculpture made of double T-girders weighing several tons and discover how your view changes with every step. The highly expressive asymmetry of this large piece by Mark di Suvero (*1933 in Shanghai) can suggest, according to where you’re standing, either quiet repose or a force that hurtles upwards like a “jet immediately before takeoff”. Weight and gravity are overcome artistically. Visible screw joints allow us to see the technology behind the traditional skeleton structure used in steel and ship construction, a technique di Suvero learned when he went to the United States in 1941 and had his first job in ship building. He constructs his sculptures himself, supported by a team of assistants. Di Suvero, the son of Italian parents, studied in San Francisco. An accident in 1960 left him partly paralyzed. Despite this, that very same year he had his first solo exhibition in New York. He began teaching at the University of California a year after his participation in documenta 4 in Kassel. In 1973 he was appointed to a professorship at the International University of Art in Venice. With over 100 large-scale sculptures in public places around the world, his work like no other has given a face to Abstract Expressionist sculpture.

Mark di Suvero

Racine du Naos, 1996

Steel, painted red

Permanent loan Michael and Eleonore Stoffel Foundation

© Stiftung Skulpturenpark Köln, 2015, Photo: Igor Chepikov