The lunchtime tourist

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August 18, 2003 // UPDATED 11:03 am - April 30, 2007
By: 39;The Inner Search' by Mark di Suvero
39;The Inner Search' by Mark di Suvero

255 2nd Ave. S.

Vying for attention in bright red and shiny stainless steel "The Inner Search" by Mark di Suvero has taken up a considerable amount of square footage Downtown since it was installed in 1980 in front of the Wells Fargo Operations Center, 255 2nd Ave. S. As Downtown's largest freestanding sculpture, made by an internationally acclaimed artist, it should be on your

to-see list.

"The Inner Search" is a 30-foot-tall, 13-ton pyramid of I-beams and stainless steel with a rocking bar and series of circular shapes on top. Commissioned by Norwest (now Wells Fargo) the artist's inspiration came from the pyramid and eye symbol on a dollar bill.

American artist Mark di Suvero was born in Shanghai, China in 1933 to Italian diplomat parents. He earned his sculpture and philosophy degree at the University of California-Berkeley.

After college, di Suvero moved to New York City and began making constructions from found building salvage. He was part of a '50s art movement that created sculptures with found objects held together with bolts and chains. These "assemblages" were a reaction to traditional carved or cast sculptures.

While working for an elevator repair company in 1960 he was pinned and became temporarily paralyzed. Confined to a wheelchair for several years, the artist learned to weld and operate cranes. Soon he began bending steel for his own sculptures. He created "Inner Search" in 1979.

di Suvero's work has been shown in museums, galleries, and public installations around the world. He was the first living artist to have a one-man show at Tuilieries Gardens in Paris. Look for another piece by this artist titled "Molecule" in the Walker Art Center's Sculpture Garden, 725 Vineland Place.

LUNCH TIP: Kieran's Pub & Restaurant, 330 2nd Ave. S., serves Irish lunches on a large patio.

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