September 18th, 2012

Happy Birthday Mark di Suvero!

Internationally renowned sculptor Mark di Suvero was born in Shanghai, China, on September 18, 1933. 

He immigrated to the United States in 1941 and received a BA in Philosophy from the University of California, Berkeley. Di Suvero began showing his sculpture in the late 1950’s and is one of the most important American artists to emerge from the Abstract Expressionist era. A pioneer in the use of steel, di Suvero is without peer in the exhibition of public sculpture worldwide. Mark di Suvero’s architectural-scale sculptures - many with moving elements that invite viewer participation - have been exhibited in the United States, France, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain, Germany, Australia, Japan and the United Kingdom. His work is in over 100 museums and public collections including the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, National Gallery of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Walker Art Center, Storm King Art Center, and UMMA!

In addition, Mark di Suvero is a lifelong activist for peace and social justice, and has demonstrated a generous commitment to helping artists. In 1962, he co-founded Park Place Gallery, the first artists’ cooperative in New York City. In 1977, he established the Athena Foundation to assist artists to realize their ambitions. In 1986, he established Socrates Sculpture Park at the site of a landfill on the East River in Queens, New York. Through his leadership, a 4.5 acre parcel was transformed by a coalition of artists and community members into an open studio and exhibition space. To date, the park has hosted the work of over 800 artists. 

Di Suvero received the Lifetime Achievement Award in Contemporary Sculpture from the International Sculpture Center in 2000 and the Heinz Award for Arts and Humanities in 2005. In 2010, di Suvero was a recipient of the Smithonian Archives of American Art Medal.

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