Newly commissioned work creates a zone of sound around the museum

Apr 18, 2006

Beacon, New York—Dia Art Foundation inaugurates a new sound work by artist Max Neuhaus on May 6, 2006, at Dia:Beacon, Riggio Galleries, the museum for its permanent collection located in the Hudson Valley. Commissioned for Dia:Beacon, Time Piece Beacon (2005) establishes a zone of sound around the perimeter of Dia’s facility. Tailored to the building and its surrounding environment, the work introduces an aural experience into the museum. Time Piece Beacon enters Dia’s collection alongside Neuhaus’s Times Square (1977), a sound work located on a pedestrian island at Broadway between 45th and 46th Streets in New York City, which was acquired in 2002.

Neuhaus premises his projects on a perception of space as a function of what we hear as well as what we see. He often exploits the specific characteristics of a given context as a foundation on which to create a new aural experience of that place. Drawing from the historic practice of using sound as a signal—such as the chimes of a clock announcing the time of day—the work introduces a “sound signal” in reverse: its subtle sound will be noticed by those within earshot when it disappears rather than when it begins. Initially inaudible, the sound will gradually emerge from the ambient noise in the museum environment and will suddenly stop. Its “signal” will be the silence left after its abrupt ending. In marking the hour with the cessation of sound, Time Piece Beacon creates a moment of stillness.

Dia’s first collaboration with Neuhaus was the reinstallation of Times Square. In May 2002 Dia worked with the Times Square Street Business Improvement District (BID), Christine Burgin, and MTA Arts for Transit to reinstate Neuhaus’s 1977 project, which had been deinstalled in 1992. With the acquisition of Time Piece Beacon, Dia maintains two of the twelve permanent sound works by Neuhaus currently active internationally.

Max Neuhaus
Max Neuhaus has worked in the fields of contemporary art and music for more than forty years. Credited with being the first to extend sound as a primary medium into the field of contemporary art, his work has been exhibited internationally in museums and galleries, including exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Musée d’art moderne de la ville de Paris; and the Kunsthalle, Bern. In addition to Times Square, permanent sound works are installed in Graz, Austria; Geneva, Switzerland; Bern, Switzerland; Turin, Italy; Bordeaux, France; and Kassel, Germany, among other locations. Neuhaus’s work has also been included in Documenta 6 (1977) and 9 (1992), and the Venice Biennale (1999). Born in Beaumont, Texas in 1939, Neuhaus spent part of his early childhood in Fishkill, New York, and currently lives in Capri, Italy.

Dia:Beacon, Riggio Galleries
Dia:Beacon, Dia Art Foundation’s museum in the Hudson Valley, presents a distinguished collection of contemporary art from the 1960s to the present. Situated on the banks of the Hudson River in Beacon, New York, the museum occupies a former Nabisco box-printing facility, which was renovated by Dia with artist Robert Irwin and architect OpenOffice.

Dia:Beacon’s expansive galleries comprise 240,000 square feet of exhibition space illuminated by natural light. The museum houses works by a focused group of some of the most significant artists of the last half century, including Bernd and Hilla Becher, Joseph Beuys, Louise Bourgeois, John Chamberlain, Walter De Maria, Dan Flavin, Michael Heizer, Robert Irwin, Donald Judd, On Kawara, Imi Knoebel, Sol LeWitt, Agnes Martin, Bruce Nauman, Blinky Palermo, Gerhard Richter, Robert Ryman, Fred Sandback, Richard Serra, Robert Smithson, Andy Warhol, and Lawrence Weiner.

Programming at the museum includes a series of year-long temporary exhibitions as well as public programs designed to complement the collection and exhibitions, including monthly Gallery Talks, music performances by St. Luke’s Chamber Ensemble, Readings in Contemporary Literature, Community Free Days for neighboring counties and an education program that serves area students at all education levels.

Dia Art Foundation

Dia Art Foundation was founded in 1974. A nonprofit institution, Dia is internationally renowned for initiating, supporting, presenting, and preserving art projects. Dia presents public programs and its permanent collection of works from the 1960s through the present at Dia:Beacon, Riggio Galleries, in New York’s Hudson Valley. Dia has also proposed a plan to relocate its contemporary exhibition program in New York City to a new facility located at the future entrance to the High Line public park in downtown Manhattan. Additionally, the foundation maintains long-term, site-specific projects in the western United States, in New York City, and on Long Island.

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For additional information or materials contact:
Press Department, Dia Art Foundation, or 212 293 5518

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