Red Building with Cranes, 1998

Mary Iverson
(American, born 1966)

Location: Sherman Elementary School, Tacoma


Red Building with Cranes is part of artist Mary Iverson’s body of paintings that explore the form of the industrial crane in an urban landscape. These cranes, used to move shipping containers, are an iconic part of the Seattle coastline. Iverson painted this piece based on studies made on location in the plein air tradition. She notes, “I am a native of Seattle and have shared this city with the container cranes all of my life. The cranes act as spirit animals for me… Part wildlife observation and part spiritual quest, my work reflects my ongoing relationship with this Seattle icon.”

This artwork was acquired for the State Art Collection in partnership with Tacoma School District.


Mary Iverson's paintings explore the balance between the natural world and industrial activities. They inspire conversations about the causes and consequences of climate change. Her main sources of inspiration are close to her home: the beautiful Port of Seattle, and three magnificent National Parks (Mount Rainier, Olympic, and North Cascades National Parks).
Iverson lives and works in Seattle, Washington. She teaches visual art at Skagit Valley College in Mount Vernon, Northwestern Washington.

Material CategoryPainting - paint on fabric
MediumOil paint on canvas
Dimensions2 ft x 4 ft x 1 in
ID NumberWSAC2001.033.000
Acquisition MethodDirect purchase
Artist LocationWashington, United States
Location Information
AgencyTacoma Public Schools
Artwork LocationSherman Elementary School
WA CountyPierce
Site TypePublic School
Address4415 N 38th St
Tacoma, WA 984075613
Geo. Coordinates47.283583 | -122.497105
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