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Elizabeth Dee Gallery on Fifth Avenue between 125th and 126th Streets in Harlem. Photo: Elizabeth Dee Gallery.

Developer to Raze Former Studio Museum Building, Forcing Elizabeth Dee Gallery to Relocate

Elizabeth Dee Gallery has announced that it is being pushed out of its Harlem location. The owner of the 2033/2037 Fifth Avenue space, which was the original home of the Studio Museum in Harlem when it opened in 1968, has decided to demolish the historic site. “I’m sorry to see this storied building go, but it has been a privilege to present contemporary art in this space during the last phase of its existence,” Elizabeth Dee said.

Established in 2002, the gallery, which represents artists such as Adrian Piper and the collective Leo Gabin, relocated to Harlem in September 2016 after nearly fifteen years of operation in Chelsea. Its current home, a two-story, 12,000-square-foot building, nearly quadrupled its exhibition space.

In a letter addressed to friends of the gallery that was sent to artforum.com, Dee wrote: “Our time in Harlem has given us a unique perspective about what is relevant to an audience uptown, what is possible for a gallery in our position, and what our goals are as we move forward.”

During its time uptown, the gallery mounted the historical exhibitions “Every Future Has a Price: 30 Years After Infotainment” (2016)—a restaging of the touring exhibition “Infotainment,” which was dedicated to the eponymous group based in the East Village in the early 1980s—and “With the Eyes of Others: Hungarian Artists of the Sixties and Seventies” (2017), a show curated by András Szántó that featured more than one hundred works by thirty Hungarian neo-avant-garde artists. It has also presented solo shows by artists such as Lisa Beck, Betty Blayton, John Giorno, Howard Halle, Lucia Hierro, Annette Lemieux, Carl Ostendarp, Julia Wachtel, and Joan Wallace.

“The gallery, now in its twenty-first year, has had four locations in three Manhattan neighborhoods,” Dee wrote. “As we plan the next stage of its evolution, we remain open to many possibilities regarding geography and architecture, and we seek to create an ideal platform for the artists with whom we collaborate . . . I look forward to keeping you updated and giving you more details of the gallery’s future plans.”

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