With museums in Europe and beyond shuttering indefinitely, the world’s biggest galleries have begun following suit, closing their U.S. locations as more coronavirus cases are reported in the country. On Thursday, with more than 1,400 confirmed cases in the United States, Pace Gallery, Hauser & Wirth, David Zwirner, and Gagosian revealed plans to close some of their spaces.
Pace said that it would close its New York space starting tomorrow. The gallery will remain open by appointment only, and a representative said in an email that it was planning “creative ways to engage audiences digitally” for its current solo shows of Paul Graham, Kenneth Noland, Julian Schnabel, and Arlene Shechet. The representative did not state a reopening date.
“While we firmly believe that communal engagement with art is crucial in these challenging times, our first priority is to take every possible measure to ensure the safety of our visitors, artists, and staff,” the gallery representative said in a statement.
Pace plans to keep open its locations in Hong Kong, London, and Seoul, and its spaces in Geneva and Palo Alto, California, are currently between shows, but will remain operational.
A Hauser & Wirth representative confirmed that the gallery’s two spaces in New York, in Chelsea and on the Upper East Side, and its large space in Los Angeles will all close to the public. All three spaces will solely remain open by appointment only—as is currently the case with the gallery’s spaces in Hong Kong and St. Moritz, Switzerland. Its locations in London and Somerset, both in England, and in Zurich will remain open.
In a letter sent to the staff, Hauser & Wirth presidents Iwan and Manuela Wirth and Marc Payot wrote, “We are all working remotely. In the locations where our spaces remain open to the public, we have created a split work schedules so that staff can alternate days working remotely and minimize exposure.”
A David Zwirner representative said that the gallery would close two of its New York spaces—one on 19th Street in Chelsea, the other on 69th Street on the Upper East Side—starting on Monday. After originally planning to keep its 20th Street space open, the gallery clarified on Thursday night that it will close that location as well.
Gagosian will close its five New York galleries starting Friday. “We are monitoring the situation closely and plan to reopen as soon as possible,” a representative said in a statement.
Earlier in the week, Gagosian and Pace revealed that they had postponed one of the season’s most anticipated shows, an exhibition of works from Donald Marron’s collection, after works from the holdings of institutions and collectors became difficult to secure. The show was planned for April, and a new date has not specified.