Dan Flavin 1933 - 1996 American Minimalism Sculptors
An originator of Minimalism, Dan Flavin visited Long Island as a child and spent the last decades of his life based on the East End. In 1972 Flavin started summering in Bridgehampton, and in 1980 bought the eighteenth-century saltbox house in Wainscott where he lived until his death. Best known for his use of fluorescent light tubes and containing pans, Flavin would seem to share little with artists fascinated by the coast. His own recollections in an autobiographical sketch suggest otherwise: “I began drawing by myself . . . a vivid, if naive record of hurricane damage on Long Island in 1938.” A family friend, a member of his father’s East River boat club, even gave him pointers. “On a . . . sunny Sunday afternoon . . . [he] showed me how to put down pencil water around a ship by lightly dappling just some of the surrounding space with the tiniest ‘half moons.’ His cosmic touch for space is in my drawings even now.” Since 1983, the Dia Art Foundation has maintained a long-term installation of Flavin’s work at the Dan Flavin Art Institute on Corwith Avenue in Bridgehampton. Accommodated in a historic building, which was once a firehouse and later a Baptist church, the Institute contains nine works designed and installed by the artist.