AFTER SANDYFlooded Chelsea Art Galleries Recover from Hurricane Sandy (Photos)Blake Gopnik11.06.12AFTER SANDYFlooded Chelsea Art Galleries Recover from Hurricane Sandy (Photos)Blake Gopnik tours through waterlogged Chelsea, where gallery owners are cleaning up after the superstorm.Blake Gopnik11.06.12 9:45 AM ETPhoto by Lucy Hogg Blake Gopnik tours through waterlogged Chelsea, where gallery owners are cleaning up after the superstorm. Photo by Lucy HoggHazmat: The New Chelsea FashionNew York art dealer Derek Eller, emerging from a gallery that suffered extensive flood damage. Five days after Hurricane Sandy, dealers were picking up the pieces in Manhattan’s flooded Chelsea neighborhood, which houses the largest concentration of art galleries ever seen on the planet. They’d made a huge amount of progress, but no one was quite sure what the future would hold—except a lot of time spent with conservators and insurance adjusters. “I’ve never filed a claim in 15 years,” said Eller. “And now I have to run a gallery and be a full-time insurance-claims person.” Photo by Lucy HoggWhen the Basement’s Your Archive as WellJames Jenkin, director of the Chelsea nonprofit Printed Matter, which specializes in artists’ books. He’s surveying a now-empty cellar that once housed the history of his institution and much of its current stock—until Sandy turned all that into flotsam. “You know what was amazing? How many people came by to help us,” he said. Photo by Lucy HoggThis Time, It Didn’t Take 40 DaysThis sludge was all that remained in the once-full basement storage space at Printed Matter in Chelsea. Photo by Lucy HoggWet BooksThe upstairs bookstore at Printed Matter was back open for business five days after the flood—but inventory was still drying out in many corners. Photo by Lucy HoggGood as NewAt David Zwirner’s deluxe gallery, workers replace water-soaked drywall. Zwirner plans to be ready for his first post-Sandy show only 10 days after the storm turned his gallery into a swimming pool. Photo by Lucy HoggWaterloggedA view of one space in the suite of them that make up the David Zwirner gallery in Chelsea. The line of new drywall indicates the height floodwaters reached in the space. Photo by Lucy HoggDamage ControlOne strip of smaller galleries lies west of Eleventh Avenue in Chelsea, on 27th Street, and was badly hurt by Sandy and the rising waters of the nearby Hudson. Five days after the disaster, staff and volunteers were still sorting through the wreckage. Photo by Lucy HoggJetsamAll around Chelsea, Dumpsters stood filled with the trappings of the business of art, made sodden by Sandy. “Galleries have tons and tons of cardboard and furniture and crates—it takes a lot of stuff to sell a work of art,” said dealer Edward Winkleman, whose basement flooded in the storm.