Arthole at DIA

Here is the DIA Art Foundation’s 350,000 square feet of art space that was formerly an old box factory for Nabisco. We suppose in a science-fiction kind of way it’s pretty cool, but ghosts abound as most of it appears as dull as an unsalted three-day-old cracker. One clue is the nearly empty parking lot, but the grounds are wonderful with lovely plantings. 

Michael Heizer’s arthole seems butchered in the middle of one majestic room with high ceilings, beautiful hardwood maple or highly polished concrete floors. It really is a series of deep holes in the floor. From our shallow perspective, construction sites are infinitely more interesting.

Overall, it's a pleasant visit; the building makes it worthwhile. The art is incredibly minimalist with the exception of Richard Serra’s CoreTen scary-about-to-crush-you steel slabs and one other interesting display that we forgot to write down. Rooms of Dan Flavins' florescent light bulbs and strings going up to the ceiling which resembles a sheet of glass? Okay, we get it, but overall about as engaging as someone else's kid’s 5th grade science fair project.

There was a young lady who looked like a lost Bernie Sanders supporter staring at a pile of rubber stuff. Another person walking around the downstairs green light area. We all read Art Forum at least once in college (or looked at the ads anyway). It's okay. We get it.

It's salubrious to visit once every ten years when they change the exhibits. In addition, it serves a purpose; a visit to DIA makes us all realize why we love drawing, painting and sculpture.


535, 541 and 545 West 22nd Street , NY, NY 10011

Tuesday–Saturday 11 am–6 pm