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 Abstract Art Online Legacy ~ Exhibition Review from October 2003

Chelsea

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GalleryViews / Chelsea

October 30, 2003  /page 1

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Mark di Suvero at the Paula Cooper Gallery,
 534 West 21st Street to November 15

This exhibition serves as a mini, mini-retrospective of di Suveroís art. Perhaps the first thing to strike you is the diversity of scale.  In the main gallery stands XV, a classic piece from di Suveroís signature style in the 70s.  It dominates the room, indeed just fits into the space. Now turn to the smaller gallery up front and fast-forward to 1990 where the far smaller and whimsical Hopesoup dominates that space.  Finally, return back to the galley entrance to take in the works on paper you breezed passed on your way to the big ticket items.  Included here are drawings ranging from the 70s right up through to this year.  They comprise studies and plans for sculpture but serve as art pieces in their own right too.  So what does it all add up to?

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Mark di Suvero, Hopesoup, 1990, steel and stainless steel, 11ft x 14 ft, 8 in x 7 ft, 6 in (Paula Cooper Gallery, New York)

Stay with the drawings to begin with. These are most revealing in that you clearly see the artistís pre-occupation with gesture even in the earliest ones. It seems a curious disconnect at first when considering the very architectural, rather static, I-beam steel pieces from the 70s. Itís as though the drawings cut directly to the soul and intent of the sculpture.  Obviously this is attributable to the materials; massive steel is incomparable to ink on paper in terms of gesture.  But itís amazing what di Suvero achieves in his drawings. Take Study for

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Mark di Suvero, XV, 1971, steel, 21ft, 7 in x 23 ft, 11 in (Paula Cooper Gallery, New York)

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Mark di Suvero, Study for Baltimore, 1976, ink on paper, 23 7/8 x 18 7/8 in (Paula Cooper Gallery, New York)

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Mark di Suvero, Installation view (Paula Cooper Gallery, New York)

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