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Rendering of the Dia Art Foundation’s expansion of Dia:Chelsea in Manhattan.

Dia to Break Ground on Its Expansion of Dia:Chelsea

Dia Art Foundation will break ground on the upgrading and expansion of Dia:Chelsea later this month, merging its three buildings to create one unified 32,500-square-foot facility on West Twenty-Second Street in New York City. Designed by Architecture Research Office (ARO), the venue is scheduled to reopen in the fall of 2020.

Featuring 20,000 square feet of street-level galleries, the expanded Dia:Chelsea will become a more flexible space that will also host public and educational programs and a bookstore. The renovation is part of a multiyear campaign to advance Dia’s mission and extend its program. The organization has already raised more than $72 million in support of the initiative; a major portion of the funding will be invested in Dia’s endowment.

Dia is also planning to launch Dia:SoHo, a 2,500-square-foot exhibition space at 77 Wooster Street; to revitalize two adjacent landmark installations by Walter De Maria; and to restore and expand the lower level of the exterior landscape of Dia:Beacon. ARO will be involved in all of the building projects.

“Dia’s physical architecture and curatorial frameworks have always been designed in deference to the art we present and the artistic experience,” said Dia Art Foundation director Jessica Morgan. “We are proud to be building on this legacy with a multifaceted and multiyear initiative that is simultaneously modest in design and ambitious in program.”

She also stressed that Dia has made it a priority to ensure that its new Chelsea home reflects the character of the neighborhood. “Working closely with ARO, our building plans for Dia:Chelsea extend Dia’s pioneering history of transforming industrial spaces into dynamic galleries for contemporary art, while demonstrating restraint and respect for the architectural vernacular,” Morgan said. On the street level, Dia will also add to Joseph Beuys’s 7000 Oaks, a series of basalt-stone columns paired with trees placed along West Twenty-Second Street from Tenth Avenue to Eleventh Avenue.