Art dealer David Zwirner is going all in in Chelsea’s world-class gallery district. Zwirner already owns much of the north side of 19th Street over there, with two or three or four (depending on the configuration) different spaces. And then in February Zwirner unveiled his minimalist beauty on 20th Street, a colossal, five-story exhibition and project space designed by Selldorf Architects. This is a lovely building, 30,000 square feet of concrete and teak wood that’s all LEED certified, designated as such for its sustainable construction and energy efficiency, the first commercial gallery ever to receive such a rating.
Richard Serra: Early Work is the Inauguaral Exhibition at the David Zwirner Gallery in Chelsea
With his 20th Street space, Zwirner joins the ranks of Gladstone, Pace, Paula Cooper, and even Gagosian himself as one of Chelsea’s biggest players… which, considering the neighborhood houses the greatest concentration of contemporary art on the planet, is saying something indeed. I stopped in to the new David Zwirner a few weeks ago to see the gallery’s inaugural exhibition, a mash up of art-world all stars Dan Flavin and Donald Judd, and then again last weekend for opening day of a terrific little show by another heavy hitter, Richard Serra.
Early Work, an Exhibition by Richard Serra, is Very Representative of the Artist’s Work
Richard Serra: Early Work is just that, two big rooms filled with sculptural pieces from 1966 to 1971, when the artist began his career-long fascination with rugged, industrial materials. There’s no mistaking a Richard Serra show–you can often smell, and even taste, the metallic tang in the air when you enter one of his exhibitions–and Early Work is no exception. Here are about two dozen small- to medium-sized pieces (and one pretty big one) made from vulcanized rubber, lead, and steel, and which neatly kick off the narrative arc of the artist’s long, successful and ongoing career.
There are a also a few of Serra’s early films running at the David Zwirner gallery, including my personal favorite, the 1968 manly classic Hand Catching Lead. Richard Serra: Early Work is a must for fans, and a good excuse for everyone else to check out the new Zwirner complex.
Richard Serra: Early Work runs through June 15 at the new David Zwirner gallery, located on 20th Street between 10th and 11th Avenues in Chelsea. David Zwirner is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Lots more info on everything here.