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The downpour in New York that left commuters reeling yesterday morning also caused a flood on 24th Street in Chelsea, with water streaming into many of the prominent galleries that line the block between 10th and 11th avenues. Luhring Augustine, Andrea Rosen and the galleries in the Tate building on the south side of the street, which include LFL, Ramis Barquet, Mike Weiss and Stellan Holm, were hard hit. Art dealers wielding sponge mops were a common sight, as were portable pumps and dehumidifiers.

Zach Feuer at LFL gallery said that when he arrived on Wednesday, his space was flooded with six inches of water. "It was pretty scary," he said, adding that his biggest problem would be re-sheetrocking the walls; the September show of works by Phoebe Washburn opens on Sept. 10 as planned. Five works on paper by gallery artists suffered water damage. The gallerys computer and office equipment was also damaged.

An employee of Stellan Holm characterized the flood -- five inches of water on the floor -- as "a disaster," but added that it was a matter of cleanup, not of damaged artworks, and said that their exhibition of works by Martin Borowski will proceed as planned. Mike Weiss told Artnet News that his gallery had been flooded with three inches of water, but that damage was limited to the bottoms of the walls. Pamela Molinar at Ramis Barquet said that the gallery was flooded but damage was minimal, since they were between shows. The fall exhibition of paintings by James Rielly is still slated to open on Friday. "It will be humid," she said, "but well manage." As for other galleries on the north side of 24th Street, Metro Pictures, Charles Cowles and Mary Boone were unaffected. Gagosian also stayed dry.

The openings of exhibitions by Pipilotti Rist at Luhring Augustine and Annika Larsson at Andrea Rosen are also expected to proceed as planned.

The rainfall also prompted flooding in SoHo, turning West Broadway into a swamp and causing the near-collapse of a building on Grand Street next door to Deitch Projects. Police closed off the area, forcing the Drawing Center to cancel its Sept. 8 vernissage for "Talespinning" and prompting Deitch to move his show of Terry Richardson photographs to his location at 26 Wooster Street.

                                                                                                                -- Sarah Douglas

German collectors Victor and Marianne Langen inaugurate their new Langen Foundation museum in an elegant 4,000-square-foot structure designed by Tadao Ando on Sunday, Sept. 12, 2004. Located near Dsseldorf at a former NATO cruise missile base, the foundation opens with an exhibition on the theme of "silence" that mixes Buddhist sculptures with a 1904 Cézanne painting of Mont Sainte-Victoire and other objects. The Langens began collecting in the 1950s and amassed hundreds of Japanese artworks from the 12th to the 19th centuries as well as modern paintings by Max Beckmann, Roy Lichtenstein, Yves Klein, Rene Magritte, Egon Schiele, Mark Rothko, Oskar Schlemmer, Antoni Tpies and others.

The tireless art critic and curator David Cohen -- he writes for the New York Sun and edits his own website,, as well as serving as curator of the gallery at the New York Studio School -- now has yet another enterprise. He is moderating "The Review Panel," a new series of monthly panels of art critics held at the National Academy at 1083 Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. The plan calls for three top critics to discuss current museum and gallery exhibitions, with the audience invited to respond. The first installment is slated for Oct. 1, 2004, 6:45 pm, and features Jerry Saltz of the Village Voice, Ken Johnson of the New York Times and Maureen Mullarkey of the New York Sun. A donation of $5 is requested.

Is there anything better than smashing a piata to release some of the aggression inspired by the new art season? A group called It Can Change is sponsoring a "Piñata Party" at Gavin Browns Enterprise at Passersby, Sept. 4-16, 2004, for which artists were encouraged to contribute goody-filled papier-mâché pretties. The great piñata smashup -- "a celebratory assault on culture" -- is slated for Sept. 10, 2004. "As the piatas are beaten pleasure is attained; beauty and craft are sacrificed," says the group in a paraphrase of 19th century anarchist Mikhail Bakunin.

The International Sculpture Center and the Salt Lake Art Center have planned a special "Spiral Jetty Weekend," Sept. 17-18, 2004, featuring field trips to Robert Smithsons famed entropic monument (including an optional air tour) as well as a panel discussion including Dia Art Foundation curator Lynne Cooke, "Robert Smithson" retrospective curator Eugenie Tsai and other Smithson experts. Tickets to the event cost $150; for more info, contact

FREDDY DE VREE, 1940-2004
Freddy De Vree, 64, Belgian poet, art critic and essayist, died in on July 3 in Antwerp, Belgium. A champion of the COBRA movement, De Vree edited several avant-garde periodicals and was a producer for 30 years at BRT-3, the cultural station of Flemish radio. He produced monographic studies of Marcel Broodthaers, Zao Wou-Ki, Pierre Alichinsky, Constant, Andy Warhol, Daniel Spoerri, Enrico Baj and other artists.

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