New York Trip: On the Train to Beacon

August 10th, 2005 · 3 Comments · New York City


One of the highlights of my recent trip to New York was our day-trip to Dia:Beacon, about two hours north of Manhattan on the Hudson River. The trip up serves as the perfect context for Dia, which is full of quiet, contemplative minimalist works. It’s soothing to be on an air-conditioned train traveling along the breathtaking river, eyes drifting out the window over the land of Thomas Cole, Washington Irving, passing West Point and Bannerman Castle. You step off the train quieted, awed, and ready to encounter work that perfectly complements your mood.

Here’s a quicktime movie of our train ride.

Category: New York City

3 Comments so far ↓

  • Murray

    I love that subtle white line on the left side of your picture.

  • John

    I’ll agree that Dia:Beacon for the most part is a quiet and contemplative environment, though what I remember most are Serra’s four large spirals in the factory’s old loading dock, and those were more quiet yet unsettling. I’ve experienced his works numerous times before and since, but this was the only time where they actually affected me physically. Walking through, my chest constricted. My breath quickened. They were very powerful. Maybe it was the environment. Maybe it was the works themselves. Whatever it was they were very memorable.

  • Meg

    John, I completely agree. For my money, there’s no better place to experience Serra than Dia:Beacon. The works are fantastic, the siting of the works is perfect.
    I heard Alan Koch, one of the architects who worked on the Beacon building, speak a few months ago, and he talked about working directly with Serra to adjust the room to suit the work. They built an architectual model with adjustable floor height, Serra made maquettes, and together they cranked the floor up and down until both the architect and artist agreed on the right spacing.

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