Sculptor Mark Di Suvero Creates Joy Out Of Steel

Eighty-six-year-old Mark di Suvero was up in a cherry picker recently, overseeing the installation of a work that had been moved from France to the Storm King Art Center in New York’s Hudson Valley. He first started using a crane to make his humongous wood beam and steel sculptures in the mid-1960s. He says he uses a crane the way a painter uses a brush: it’s a tool for doing the work … just bigger and way scarier. “The crane is a very delicate instrument that’s a question of life and death,” di Suvero says. “They may talk about painters risking their life with a painting but it’s very different when you’re working with 10 tons of steel and there are people working with you. The question of life and death is right there.” Di Suvero speaks from experience — in 1960, he almost died in a construction site accident, “a terrible accident when I was working for two dollars an hour as a cabinet makers helper,” di Suvero says. He was left unable to walk. He was already affiliated with a