Dia Chelsea Reopens Following Two-Year-Long Renovation and Expansion

Inaugural exhibition presents new commissions by Lucy Raven

For immediate release
April 16, 2021

New York, NY, April 16, 2021 – Following a two-year-long renovation and expansion project, the new Dia Chelsea reopened to the public today, April 16, 2021. On reopening, admission to Dia Chelsea is now permanently free, making all of Dia’s five sites and locations in New York City free to the public.

Dia Chelsea reopens with an exhibition of newly commissioned works by Lucy Raven. Following a three-year engagement with Dia, Raven presents Casters X-2 + Casters X-3 (2021), an installation of kinetic light sculptures that belongs to her ongoing Casters series (2016– ); and Ready Mix (2021) an immersive installation featuring a forty-five-minute film shot over two years at a concrete plant in central Idaho. Together, these projects address the formation, depiction, and surveillance of landscapes and civic spaces, proposing abstraction as a tool for (re)perceiving these sites.

“Dia has long been distinguished by its artist-centric approach, which has enabled the realization of complex projects that would have otherwise been impossible to create due to their scale and duration. Raven’s inaugural commission for Dia Chelsea embodies our commitment to this ideal,” said Jessica Morgan, Dia’s Nathalie de Gunzburg director. “I am delighted to activate the galleries with Raven's commission and to finally provide a permanent home for Dia in this neighborhood so we can continue to expand the role we play in local and international arts ecologies.” 

Continuing Dia’s history of repurposing and revitalizing existing buildings, the renovation retains the character and vernacular of the Chelsea neighborhood of which Dia has been a part since the 1980s. Designed by Architecture Research Office, the 32,500-square-foot project merges Dia’s three contiguous Chelsea buildings to support a more cohesive visitor experience. The new Dia Chelsea will feature 20,000-square-feet of integrated street-level galleries for exhibitions, a new flexible space for public and educational programs, and the return of Dia’s bookstore to the city. Dia has also extended Joseph Beuys’s 7000 Eichen (7000 Oaks) along West 22nd Street, bringing the total number of paired basalt columns and trees to thiry-eight.

The renovation in Chelsea is part of a comprehensive multiyear campaign to advance Dia’s mission, program, resources, and facilities. Alongside the revitalization of Dia Chelsea, the project encompasses: the future launch of Dia SoHo (a 2,500-square-foot exhibition space at 77 Wooster Street) and simultaneous revitalization of two nearby, landmark installations by Walter De Maria; the restoration and expansion of Dia Beacon’s lower-level galleries and landscaping; and the strengthening of Dia’s endowment, supporting operations across all sites and the growth and conservation of its collection. Dia is working with Architecture Research Office on all of its forthcoming building projects.

Dia Art Foundation 
Taking its name from the Greek word meaning “through,” Dia was established in 1974 with the mission to serve as a conduit for artists to realize ambitious new projects, unmediated by overt interpretation and uncurbed by the limitations of more traditional museums and galleries. Dia’s programming fosters contemplative and sustained consideration of a single artist’s body of work and its collection is distinguished by the deep and longstanding relationships that the nonprofit has cultivated with artists whose work came to prominence particularly in the 1960s and ’70s. 

In addition to Dia Beacon, Dia Bridgehampton, and Dia Chelsea, Dia maintains and operates a constellation of commissions, long-term installations, and site-specific projects, notably focused on Land art, nationally and internationally. These include: 

  • Walter De Maria’s The New York Earth Room (1977) and The Broken Kilometer (1979), Max Neuhaus’s Times Square (1977), and Joseph Beuys’s 7000 Eichen (7000 Oaks, inaugurated in 1982 and ongoing), all of which are located in New York City
  • De Maria’s The Lightning Field (1977) in western New Mexico
  • Robert Smithson’s Spiral Jetty (1970) in the Great Salt Lake, Utah
  • Nancy Holt’s Sun Tunnels (1973–76) in the Great Basin Desert, Utah
  • De Maria’s The Vertical Earth Kilometer (1977) in Kassel, Germany


For additional information or materials, contact:
Hannah Gompertz, Dia Art Foundation, hgompertz@diaart.org, +1 212 293 5598
Melissa Parsoff, Parsoff Communications, mparsoff@parsoff-communications.com, +1 516 445 5899 (US press inquiries)  
Sam Talbot, sam@sam-talbot.com, +44 (0) 772 5184 630 (international press inquiries)


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