“Around Day’s End” Debuts at the Whitney September 3

On September 3, the Whitney will debut Around Day’s End: Downtown New York, 1970–1986. The exhibition pays homage to Gordon Matta-Clark’s legendary Day’s End (1975) and features works by twenty-two artists who engaged with the Meatpacking District and West Side piers, among other downtown Manhattan locations, in the 1970s and early 1980s. Around Day’s End also anticipates David Hammons‘s monumental public artwork Day’s End, to be completed in late fall 2020 and located directly across from the Whitney in Hudson River Park. Drawn primarily from the Whitney’s collection, the exhibition is organized by Laura Phipps, assistant curator, with Christie Mitchell, senior curatorial assistant, and runs through October 25, 2020.

Image credit: Gordon Matta‑Clark, Day’s End Pier 52.3 (Documentation of the action “Day’s End” made in 1975 in New York, United States), 1975 (printed 1977). Gelatin silver print: sheet, 8 × 10 in. (20.3 × 25.4 cm); image, 7 × 9 3/4 in. (17.8 × 24.8 cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; gift of Harold Berg 2017.134. © Estate of Gordon Matta-Clark / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

In 1975, Matta-Clark created Day’s End in a former shipping warehouse on Pier 52, which stood on the Hudson River across from the Museum’s current home. Matta-Clark cut massive openings into the dilapidated pier shed’s walls, roof, and floor. He wanted to transform the building into a “temple to sun and water.” Also titled Day’s End, Hammons’s sculpture is a meditation on Matta-Clark’s intervention. Hammons first proposed his sculpture to the Museum in 2014 and it is nearing completion this fall during a period of profound crisis and uncertainty. While it conjures the layered history of the neighborhood and the river, Hammons’s project acts as an evocative landmark for the reimagining of the site and serves as a powerful testament to the tenacity and resilience of New York.

“David Hammons’s much anticipated public art project provides a unique opportunity to not only think about the complex history of the Pier 52 site, but to also consider the time and conditions that existed when Matta-Clark’s Day’s End was conceived in 1975. Around Day’s End explores these related stories,” explained assistant curator Laura Phipps, an organizer of the exhibition. “While there is something disquieting about today’s parallels with many of issues and the conditions these artists were addressing at that time—economic uncertainty, crumbling infrastructure, disappearing public space—it can also be reassuring or inspiring to look back at the incisive approaches artists took with the physical material and ephemeral ideas of New York City to imagine ways through and forward.”


  • Alvin Baltrop (b. 1948; Bronx, NY, , d. 2004; New York, NY)
  • Jean-Michel Basquiat (b. 1960; Brooklyn, NY, d. 1988; New York, NY)
  • Dawoud Bey (b. 1953; Queens, NY)
  • Mel Bochner (b. 1940; Pittsburgh, PA)
  • Christo (b. 1935; Gabrovo, Bulgaria, d. 2020; New York, NY)
  • János Kender (b. 1938; Baja, Hungary; d. 2009; West Palm Beach, FL)
  • Gordon Matta-Clark (b. 1943; New York, NY, d. 1978; Nyack, NY)
  • Robert Morris (b. 1931; Kansas City, MO, d. 2018; Kingston, NY)
  • Martha Rosler (b. 1943; Brooklyn, NY)
  • Richard Serra (b. 1938; San Francisco, CA)
  • Harry Shunk (b. 1924; Leipzig, Germany, d. 2006; New York, NY)
  • Carol Goodden (b. 1940; London, United Kingdom)
  • David Hammons (b. 1943; Springfield, IL)
  • Peter Hujar (b. 1934; Trenton, NJ, d. 1987; New York, NY)
  • G. Peter Jemison (b. 1945; Silver Creek, NY, Seneca Nation of Indians, Heron Clan)
  • Joan Jonas (b. 1936; New York, NY)
  • Kiki Smith (b. 1954; Nuremberg, Germany)
  • Anton van Dalen (b. 1938; Amstelveen, Netherlands)
  • William Wegman (b. 1943; Holyoke, MA)
  • David Wojnarowicz (b. 1954; Red Bank, NJ, d. 1992; New York, NY)
  • Martin Wong (b. 1946; Portland, OR, d. 1999; San Francisco, CA)
  • Jimmy Wright (b. 1944; Union City, NJ)

The works featured in the exhibition intervene in the urban fabric of the city in various ways: Matta-Clark and Joan Jonas present the city itself as a character, pointing to New York as a place that embodies both presence and invisibility. For other artists, like Alvin Baltrop and Jimmy Wright, the periphery of the city became synonymous for historically marginalized populations; their depictions of the West Side piers and Meatpacking District reveal how queer life found community and intimacy in forgotten, and reclaimed, corners. Martin Wong and others made visceral works that looked at the ways particular downtown neighborhoods, like the Bowery and Lower East Side, were impacted by deteriorating economic conditions. For these artists the city was and remains material, inspiration, specter, and provocation.

The exhibition also includes an architectural model for Hammons’s public art project, which the Whitney is realizing with the Hudson River Park Trust. Around Day’s End is installed in the John R. Eckel, Jr. Foundation Gallery, on the Museum’s first floor, which is accessible to the public free-of-charge. All visitors and members must reserve timed tickets in advance at whitney.org.

Major support for Around Day’s End: Downtown New York, 1970–1986 is provided by the John R. Eckel, Jr. Foundation.

The Whitney Museum of American Art is located at 99 Gansevoort Street between Washington and West Streets, New York City. Beginning September 3, 2020, public hours are: Monday and Thursday: 11:30 am–6 pm; Friday: 1:30–9 pm; Saturday and Sunday: 1–6 pm. Member-only hours are: Monday and Thursday: 6–7 pm; Saturday and Sunday: 10:30 am–1 pm. Closed Tuesday and Wednesday. Admission is pay-what-you-wish through September 28, 2020. Visitors 18 years & under and Whitney members: FREE. Reserve timed-entry tickets in advance at whitney.org. For more information on reopening visit whitney.org. For general information please call (212) 570-3600 or visit whitney.org.

National Museum of African American History and Culture Honors March on Washington Anniversary

Museum’s Grand Opening Film “August 28” To Air Publicly for 24 Hours

On August 28, 1963, more than 200,000 people gathered on the National Mall to March for Jobs and Freedom. This month, more than 50 years later, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture will commemorate the March on Washington with a digital resource webpage exploring the historical significance of the march with collection objects, stories, videos and content related to the historic march. This page will include voices of A. Phillip Randolph, Rep. John Lewis, and many unsung activists and a performance by singer Marian Anderson. The resource webpage is available at nmaahc.si.edu/marchonwashington.

To mark the anniversary day (Aug. 28), the museum will also make available the film commissioned for its grand opening by Ava Duvernay,August 28: A Day in the Life of a People. The film will be available to view on the museum’s homepage and YouTube channel starting at 10:00 a.m. for 24 hours.

“This Friday marks the 57th anniversary of the March on Washington, which in 1963, brought together more than a quarter-million people advocating for racial justice,” said Spencer Crew, acting director of National Museum of African American History and Culture. “Demonstrations have long been a way for American citizens to help the nation live up to its stated ideals, making Friday’s anniversary and march not just a commemoration, but the continuation of an American tradition that began centuries ago.” Crew continued, “Evidence of not only how far we have come since 1963, but the long journey ahead to justice and equality.”

March on Washington Programming

NMAAHC Presents Why we march…(a short video)

Friday, Aug. 28

Why we march…” is a three-minute video exploring the role of marching in social justice reform. The video uses photography from the museum’s collection to illustrate more than 50 years of community activism and protest movements for racial and social justice and equity in the United States to begin to answer the question, why we march. Click video below or visit @NMAAHC’s YouTube channel or the March on Washington webpage to see the video.

Cinema and Conversation—Black Journal: Black Women

Thursday, Aug. 27; 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

This series will feature two rare films from the museum’s collection, The Black Woman and Alice Coltrane, from the seminal program Black Journal (1960–1970). Alice Coltrane is an intimate visit with musician Alice Coltrane at her home. The Black Woman focuses on—in the words of Black Journal host Tony Brown—one of the greatest institutions in the world: “The Black woman.” Curator of photography and film Rhea Combs will introduce the movie, followed by a discussion with scholar Philana Payton and journalist Joan Harris, who was interviewed in The Black Woman. Co-presented with Screen Slate, the films will be available for viewing at www.twitch.tv/screenslate.

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Following its temporary closure on March 13, 2020, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Whitney Museum of American Art today announced its plans to reopen to the public on September 3, 2020. Prioritizing the health and safety of its visitors and staff, the Museum will operate at no more than twenty-five percent of its total capacity to ensure proper physical distancing.

The Museum also announced that pay-what-you-wish admission will be offered to all through September 28, 2020. Due to limited capacity and to facilitate contactless entry into the Museum, all visitors and members will need to reserve timed-entry tickets in advance on whitney.org.

Installation view of The Whitney’s Collection: Selections from 1900 to 1965 (Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, June 28, 2019–May 8, 2022). From left to right: Joan Mitchell, Hemlock, 1956; Edward Ruscha, Large Trademark with Eight Spotlights, 1962; Jay DeFeo, The Rose, 1958–1966. Photograph by Ron Amstutz

“Cultural institutions like the Whitney are an essential part of the fabric of New York and are integral to its successful and safe reopening,” said Adam D. Weinberg, Alice Pratt Brown Director of the Whitney Museum. “Our priority is the health and safety of our staff and visitors. Over the past few months, our internal team has carefully developed safety protocols with guidance from health experts and collaboratively working with peer institutions across the city through the NYC Museums Reopening Task Force. We look forward to welcoming visitors back to the Museum with confidence that they can safely engage with our exhibitions and collection. I am especially pleased that we will be able to offer pay-what-you-wish admission during the month of September, making the Museum more accessible to New Yorkers.”

Enhanced sanitizing and cleaning protocols, state-of-the-art air filtration systems, one-way directional signage, and ground markings are among the new safety measures that have been implemented throughout the building. In accordance with city and state guidelines, all staff, volunteers, and visitors will be required to wear face coverings and practice physical distancing while in the Museum.

The Whitney also announced today the extension of critically acclaimed exhibitions. Vida Americana: Mexican Muralists Remake American Art, 1925–1945 and Cauleen Smith: Mutualities have been extended through January 31, 2021. Agnes Pelton: Desert Transcendentalist, which originally opened on March 13 when the Museum’s temporary closure began, has been extended to November 1, 2020. The Museum’s billboard project at 95 Horatio featuring Jill Mulleady’s We Wither Time into a Coil of Fright has been extended through January 2021. The collection installations, Making Knowing: Craft in Art, 1950–2019 and The Whitney’s Collection: Selections From 1900 to 1965 will also welcome visitors back to the Museum.