Skyscrapers & Art

United Nations Grounds

United Nations Grounds, New York City

August 27th, 2019

Lyndhurst Mansion

An even better shelter (this time from the inevitable -and welcome- downpour/relief from the heat). Gothic Revival at its finest, a mansion worthy of its notable owners: William Paulding Jr., a New York City Mayor; George Merritt, a wealthy businessman; and Wall Street tycoon Jay Gould who updated some of the interior décor by commissioning furniture from the Herter Brothers, windows from Louis Comfort Tiffany, and paintings from the Knoedler Gallery. Thankfully, they still remain intact, and most of the furnishings on view are original.

Josef Scheurenberg, The Confidante, 1880, oil on canvas

Lyndhurst Mansion, Tarrytown

Designed in 1838 by architect Alexander Jackson Davis.

July 18th, 2019

Brick House

Surrounded by glass, attracting stares; some stony. Why was she given no eyes of her own?

Brick House, Bronze

”Simone Leigh presents Brick House, a 16-foot-tall bronze bust of a Black woman with a torso that combines the forms of a skirt and a clay house. The sculpture’s head is crowned with an afro framed by cornrow braids, each ending in a cowrie shell. Brick House is the inaugural commission for the High Line Plinth, a new landmark destination for major public artworks in New York City. This is the first monumental sculpture in Leigh’s Anatomy of Architecture series, an ongoing body of work in which the artist combines architectural forms from regions as varied as West Africa and the Southern United States with the human body. The title comes from the term for a strong Black woman who stands with the strength, endurance, and integrity of a house made of bricks.”

On the High Line

June 5th, 2019

Chapel of the Holy Cross

Pilgrimage (yet, still no vortex).

Designed by Marguerite Brunswig Staude, inspired by the Empire State Building in New York upon which Marguerite perceived a cross, had it not been for the Second World War, the Chapel would have been built in Budapest, Hungary overlooking the Danube, co-designed with Lloyd Wright, son of Frank Lloyd Wright.

As fate (or was it the hand of god) would have it, the Chapel of the Holy Cross came to be in Sedona, where Staude, together with Richard Hein and August K. Strotz of the Anshen & Allen architecture company, ”decided upon a twin-pinnacled spur 80m-high jutting out of a 300m rock wall which Staude described as being as solid as the rock of Peter”. [source]

It was completed in 1956 and received an Award of Honor by the American Institute of Architects, in 1957.

On the other hand, the huge mansion simply known as ”The House”, obstructing the view across from the Chapel, was commissioned by Dr. Ioan Cosmescu, an inventor and biomedical engineer who obviously did very well financially, was completed in 2008 and received the ”Eyesore Award” by the local community, every year since.

Sedona, AZ

May 2nd, 2019