Walking down 21st street yesterday was a sobering reminder that even the most impenetrable Chelsea galleries are run by people; from the looks of it, they may have been hit the hardest. We wouldn’t wish this on anyone.
Galleries on 21st and 24th streets were squeegeeing sheets of water off their floors and dumping piles of what looked like art packaging onto the street. A 24th street director told me that when they came in on Monday, the water was up to his thigh. “On 21st, it was up to your chest,” he said.
From the flood lines on buildings, it seemed that the water receded around 10th ave, but places like the Guardian Angel Church and The Red Cat on 10th were pumping several feet of water out of their basements. At least one gallerist I saw on 10th had lost a ton of work from storage.
I checked on the 27th street galleries, but their gates were shut. Hopefully their elevation helped.
We’ll have more on the story as we hear from galleries and artists.