If you are anything like us, the gorgeous spring weather, coupled with the increasingly long days, has infected you with a raging case of spring fever only rivaled by the fevered psychosis of an eighth grader on the last afternoon of school. Our lunch hours are getting a little bit longer each day and by 4:59 every Friday we've got our noses pressed against the glass doors of our office, twitching a little bit more with ever passing second. This Friday should prove even worse, since we're planning a weekend trip to Dia Beacon, the irresistible contemporary art museum just far enough out of the city to feel like a little day vacation.
This week, in honor of the second anniversary of Dia Beacon and the tenth anniversary of The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburg, the museum opened its new exhibition of Warhol's work, entitled "Dia's Andy: Through the Lens of Patronage." The Dia Foundation has been collecting, and occasionally commissioning, Warhol's work since its beginnings in the 1970s. In 1994, it gifted 80 of its Warhol works to help found the Warhol museum in Pittsburgh. Now, a number of these works are temporarily returning, to be exhibited along with works from Dia's own collection, including his multiple canvas work "Shadows."
The exhibition, much of which will be installed around walls covered in Warhol-designed wall paper, will consist of a wide range of Warhol's work including: 75 portraits, works from the "Disaster and Skulls" series, an installation of Brillo boxes, and a display of Time Capsules. Personally, we have to say we're most excited for the 70 Screen Tests that will also be shown, as we have always found these weirdly captivating.
The museum is also presenting a weekend series of Warhol's early films to along with this exhibition. The series was curated by venerable art historian Douglas Crimp, who will also be giving a lecture on Warhol's work on July 30th. Of course, as the museum site kindly points out, viewers should be warned that the films contain adult content, just in case titles like "Blowjob" and "Harlot" didn't tip anyone off.
In addition to the film series and the museum's excellent permanent collection, the Warhol exhibit will also be accompanied by "In and Out of Place," a show of works made by Louise Lawler in response to Warhol's work. The first component consists of photographs of Warhol's works placed in diverse sites, shot by Lawler over the course of the last twenty five years. The second, an audio work entitled "Birdcall," is installed in the museum's west garden.
Dia Beacon is open Thursdays through Mondays during the summer and is easily accessible by car or by Metro North. A discount rail and admission package is available through the MTA. The Warhol exhibition will be on display through April 2006. All film screenings are free with admission and will take place on weekends through Labor Day.