The Dia:Beacon was one destination that was set in stone during our Hudson Valley itinerary. It’s an uber cool gallery housed in an old Nabisco box-printing factory. An extension of the original Dia in Chelsea founded in 1974, the Beacon was opened in 2003 and houses many large scale installations. I had been wanting to see Richard Serra’s work in particular, and figured the kids would appreciate the scale of the art at the very least. Admittedly, I hadn’t read much about the artist or his inspiration before our visit – which was actually a benefit, in my opinion. I was able to experience the art without any bias and come to my own conclusions. One thing was for sure: it was extremely photogenic.
His massive sculptural steel pieces are surprisingly moving, and it was a really cool experience to share as a family. The museum staff was welcoming to the kids (free admission under 12), despite many pieces being quite exposed and vulnerable. Thankfully, Henry and Marie are well-versed in museum etiquette and understand the “no touchy” rule. While there were many other pieces that impressed us, photography is not allowed everywhere. Side note: I love the photo that my hubby took of me and the kids (it’s so rare that I’m in photos, something I’m trying to change). Once we were done inside, we let the kids run around the beautifully manicured and minimal garden – the kids were thankful to get some energy out before getting back in the car. We grabbed a quick bite at the café and a new children’s book (they have a cool selection) and said goodbye to the Dia. Sharing these experiences with my children is such an incredible joy.