Dan Flavin was born in 1933 in New York City. In the mid-1950s, he served in the US Air Force, after which he returned to New York, where he studied art history at the New School for Social Research and Columbia University. In 1961, he had his first solo exhibition at the Judson Gallery, New York. Later that year he began experimenting with electric light in a series of works called “icons,” which led him to his first work made solely of fluorescent light, the diagonal of May 25, 1963 (to Constantin Brancusi) (1963). Major exhibitions of Flavin’s work include those at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (1967); the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa (1969); and the Staatliche Kunsthalle, Baden-Baden (1989). In 2004, Dia organized a traveling retrospective in association with the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC. In 1983, Dia opened the Dan Flavin Art Institute, a permanent exhibition designed by the artist in a former firehouse and Baptist church in Bridgehampton, New York. Flavin’s last completed work, untitled (1996), occupies the stairwell at 548 West 22nd Street in New York City in a building formerly used by Dia as an exhibition space. In 2014, the installation of untitled (to you, Heiner, with admiration and affection) (1973) was designated as an official Dia site and reinstalled on the premises of the Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich. Flavin died in November 1996 in Long Island, New York.