Buzzy NYC gallery sweetens the deal with rooftop beehives

GOSSIP & RUMORS: Buzzy NYC gallery sweetens the deal with rooftop beehives

Check out these bee-youtiful digs.

The rooftop of one well-respected Chelsea exhibition space is known for its striking works of contemporary sculpture — now, it’s home to five lucky hives of bees, too.

The Kasmin Gallery’s sweet setup first came about during the pandemic, after staff returned to the 5,000-square-foot open-air oasis above 509 West 27th Street to find nature having its way with the High Line-adjacent space while the humans worked from home, Elaine Velie first reported for Hyperallergic

“It was really overgrown but quite beautiful, and there were a lot of really wonderful pollinators — birds and bees and butterflies — up there,” Nicholas Olney, Kasmin’s president, told The Post. “We thought it would be really wonderful to have beehives up there and take advantage and to do something different with the roof. So we put bees in.” 

A group called Best Bees works with Kasmin on keeping their smallest exhibitors happy, and the critters have earned their keep by producing an average rate of 100 or so jars of honey. 

“Every year we commission an artist from the gallery to make a label for the” jars, which are then given out to gallery artists, Olney explained. 

One of the rooftop’s five current hives.
Courtesy of Kasmin
Artist Claude Lalanne’s
“Pomme d’Hiver.”
Courtesy of Kasmin
Al-Hadid’s “In Mortal Repose.”
Diego Flores
The artist Diana Al-Hadid’s bronze work “Double Standard.”
Courtesy of Kasmin
The garden has intentionally been let to grow rather wild.
Courtesy of Kasmin

“They’ve become a popular holiday gift,” Molly Taylor, Kasmin’s director of communications, told Hyperallergic, adding that the bees have become something of a “mascot” for the gallery. 

Additionally, the honey provides valuable information to researchers at MIT and Jeff Bezos’ company Blue Origins, who analyze it for data regarding plant diversity, pesticide exposure and environmental wellness in New York City.

Fans of NYC’s buzziest artists can only get so close to their idols — the garden itself is closed to the public, but can be seen from The High Line, just north of 27th Street.

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