Hauser & Wirth recently dismissed rumors that it was preparing to leave its five-year-old gallery in Downtown Los Angeles. In a recent interview, however, president Marc Payot confirmed that the global mega-gallery would be leasing out a new building in West Hollywood to expand its footprint in Southern California. Housing 5,000 square feet of exhibition space and featuring a soon-to-be-announced restaurant, the new site is meant to complement—not compete with—the popular Downtown location, and will offer a home for the gallery’s esteemed artist roster that includes Paul McCarthy, Diana Thater, and the late Luchita Hurtado when it opens next fall.
Longtime collaborator Selldorf Architects was enlisted to design the new gallery, which occupies a former vintage car showroom in a 1930s Spanish Colonial Revival–style building with large windows facing Santa Monica Boulevard. The firm not only masterminded Hauser & Wirth’s Downtown location, which sits inside a revamped 19th-century flour mill, but also reimagined its New York gallery with column-free spaces and a masonry facade.
“Since the beginning, we always thought of L.A. as a city where we’d love to have more than one location,” Hauser & Wirth president Marc Payot told the Los Angeles Times. “We really expect L.A. to come back to its full bloom after the pandemic, and this is the next step for us. It’s first and foremost a commitment to L.A. Just as our five-year-old Downtown location, with its grand historical mill structures, serves as a special arts destination redolent of its place, our new West Hollywood location will express the vibrant atmosphere of that part of L.A.”
Given that Hauser & Wirth’s Downtown hub was already the city’s largest gallery space, further expansion signifies newfound confidence in L.A.’s post-pandemic art market. It won’t come without some competition—after abruptly shuttering its location in San Francisco, Gagosian struck a deal earlier this year to expand into a former masonic temple that previously housed the ill-fated Marciano Foundation.