It’s always good advice never to begin with an excuse. Regardless, this is just what I’m going to do. Here’s why.
Several people have impatiently asked for my next post, hoping for another one on Cuba. My response to them (and the rest of my readers) is that more posts will follow on Cuba as well as on other topics from my photographic encounters with the urban environment, its people, and their creations.
However, Adobe (the owner and licenser of Photoshop) is no longer allowing me to use the quite ancient version of Photoshop that I have, apparently because I bought a new computer. It appears that Adobe–much like Sarum overlooking Middle Earth from Mordor–has spotted a new computer trying to open my legally licensed Photoshop and assumes me to be an alien enemy.
So, until I negotiate with Adobe, I am unable to work up any new photographs. This leaves me with only a ready a file of photographs from 2014 that I had held in reserve. This post draws on that file. It was waiting for just this moment.
I hope you enjoy these images. I loosely order them from aspects of the built environment to people, some of whom I know and others whose presence adds meaning to the urban environment from which I so often draw.
|Completing the Arch, 3rd Avenue, the Bronx, NYC|
|St, John’s Arcade, South Buttresses, St. John the Divine, Amsterdam Avenue, Manhattan, NYC|
|Frazee’s Dome, Federal Hall, Wall Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Dome with Pantocrator, St. George Ukranian Church, East 7th Street, Manhattan, NYC|
These two domes offer radically different structural solutions to attain stability. Frazee’s Dome is supported on a continuous ring wall of masonry and columns. In contrast, the dome directly above is supported on four points through the use of pendentives.
|4-Part Cross-Vaults, Federal Reserve Bank, Liberty Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Barrel Vault on Columns, Our Lady of Pompeii Church, Carmine Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Cannon and Quoins, Fort Jay, Governors Island, Manhattan, NYC|
|Macombs Dam Bridge, Harlem River, 155th Street, Manhattan side, NYC|
|Under the Viaduct, Lower 155th Street, Harlem, Manhattan, NYC|
155th Street was the northernmost street to be drawn up in the Commissioners’ Plan of 1811, and we see here that, where the land dips sharply down to the Harlem River, it consists of an upper and a lower section.The lower section, seen directly above, is covered by a viaduct which, in turn, supports the upper section; that section feeds into the Macombs Dam Bridge. Both the viaduct and the bridge were designed and built in the early 1890s by the engineer, Alfred P. Boller.
The Polo Grounds, where the New York (baseball) Giants played until they moved to San Francisco in 1957, was located just to the left of where I stood to take the above photograph. Were we to stand directly above this spot, on the upper roadway, we would look across the bridge and see Yankee Stadium. Either team could have easily taken a warm-up jog across the bridge to the other’s stadium for an an inter-league game!
|Integrity Protecting the Works of Man, Pediment, New York Stock Exchange, Wall Street, Manhattan, NYC|
If only America’s major Wall Street bankers looked up to this pediment on their daily trek to work and paid homage to its main personification, Integrity, our economy and maybe our lives as well, would be in much better shape today.The pediment was designed by John Quincy Adams Ward (and Paul Bartlett). The figures were fabricated by Getullio Piccirilli of the Bronx. Although they appear to be carved from stone, the figures are actually sheet copper coated with white lead.
|Greek Hinges, Church of the Intercession, Broadway, Washington Heights, Manhattan, NYC|
|Africa, U.S. Custom House, Bowling Green, Manhattan, NYC|
|Bronx & Brooklyn, Old Police headquarters, Centre Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Asclepius, German Dispensary, 2nd Avenue, Manhattan, NYC|
|Puck, Puck Building, Houston Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Famous Writers, National Arts Club, Gramercy Park South, Manhattan, NYC|
This is a detail of the façade of the house of Samuel J. Tilden by Calvert Vaux and George Radford, completed in 1884; the National Arts Club took possession of it in 1906. Here, in red sandstone, we see the heads of Shakespeare, Milton, Franklin, Goethe and Dante.
|Bowie & Buddies, Alamo Cenotaph, Alamo Plaza, San Antonio, TX|
|Balto, East Drive, Central Park, Manhattan, NYC|
Balto was a Siberian Husky and lead dog for the successful 1925 Serum Run which rescued Nome, Alaska and surrounding communities from an epidemic of diphtheria.Behind Balto is the 1861 Willowdell Arch, designed by Calvert Vaux and Jacob Wrey Mould.
|Sacred Mysteries, Main Altar, Our Lady of Pompeii Church, Carmine Street, Manhattan, NYC|
The altar as sacred table for the Eucharist, as border where the human and the Divine meet, is emphasized by the Last Supper (below) and the looming image of Christ (above). It’s all a bit intimidating, and inaccessible to an atheist like me. But it remains a powerful construct.
|Marquee, Paramount Building, Broadway, Manhattan, NYC|
|Art Deco Pilasters, East 86th Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Renaissance Portal, Riverside Drive, Manhattan, NYC|
|Owl, Dog & Rabbit, Millan House, East 67th Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Animal House, East 140th Street, the Bronx, NYC|
|Havemeyer & Payne Stables, East 66th Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Hands Up, East 92nd Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Not My Dentist’s Office, West Commerce Street, San Antonio, TX|
|Trusses, Macombs Dam Bridge, Harlem River, 155th Street, NYC|
|A Bronx Perspective, Bruckner Boulevard at the Harlem River, Mott Haven, the Bronx, NYC|
For at least fifteen years, this enormous neon sign rose over a factory building in the South Bronx at the edge of the Harlem River. It faced Manhattan. And so, Bronx residents took a certain pride of identity from displays of its back-side. A tee shirt, for example, printed just as we see here, became code for “I’m from the Bronx.”No more. Developers have begun eyeing the Bronx, and the building that accommodated this sign is being renovated. Alas, the sign has disappeared. Some may say “good riddance;” however, this sign may well have been the largest neon sign in New York City and it was one of the last signs made by Artkraft Strauss.
|Bridge 27 with Daffodils, Central Park, Manhattan, NYC|
|Sugar Hill Renaissance, Terracotta Cornice, St. Nicholas Avenue, Manhattan, NYC|
|Mine Is Bigger, Cornices, St. Nicholas Avenue, Manhattan, NYC|
|Nelson’s Bench, Macombs Dam Park, River Avenue, the Bronx, NYC|
|Quatrefoil with Red Rag, Rope & Brush, St. John the Divine, Amsterdam Avenue, Manhattan, NYC|
|Rope, Steel & Stone, St. John the Divine, Amsterdam Avenue, Manhattan, NYC|
|Bethesda Bubble, Bethesda Terrace, Central Park, Manhattan, NYC|
|16 Bubbles, St. Mary’s Park, the Bronx, NYC|
|Flower Cats, Flower Shop, Willis Avenue, the Bronx, NYC|
|Santa Lost It, Alexander Avenue, the Bronx, NYC|
|On or Off, Broadway (East Village), Manhattan, NYC|
|Cleatus, Broadway (Times Square), Manhattan, NYC|
|Study in Red (Photographer’s Wife), Greenwich Village, Manhattan, NYC|
|My Best Side (the Photographer/Blogger), 92nd Street Y, Manhattan, NYC|
|Bill (Artists with their Work series), Lancaster, PA|
|Christy (Artists with their Work series), Mercer Street, 2014 Volta NY Show, Manhattan, NYC|
|Robert (Artists at Work series), the Bronx, NYC|
|Amanda, Bronx Documentary Center, the Bronx, NYC|
|Pippa, Harlem, Manhattan, NYC|
|Jeff, 96th Street Starbucks, Manhattan, NYC|
|Halfway There: Woman on Steps, 155th Street Viaduct, Manhattan, NYC|
|Slalom Skater, The Mall (North End), Central Park, Manhattan, NYC|
|At the Barre, High Line, Chelsea, Manhattan, NYC|
|On the High Line, 20th Street, Chelsea, Manhattan, NYC|
|Red Glove, Lower Broadway, Manhattan, NYC|
|Front Row Seat, World Cup Viewer, East Houston Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Philipp (German Fan), World Cup (Germany vs. USA), Stuyvesant Town, Manhattan, NYC|
|Plein Air Workspace, 11th Street, Greenwich Village, Manhattan, NYC|
|Reader En Air Congelé, Ballground, Central Park, Manhattan, NYC|
|A Springtime Read, Lawn West of the Reservoir, Central Park, Manhattan, NYC|
|At the Trestle, Chelsea, Manhattan, NYC|
|Catching the Cup, World Cup Viewers outside Mezetto, Lower East Side, Manhattan, NYC|
|Bikers, Cooper Square, Manhattan, NYC|
|Bottle Collector, East 3rd Street, Manhattan, NYC|
|Peruvian Woman, Union Square, Manhattan, NYC|
|Python Man, Bleecker Street, West Village, Manhattan, NYC|
|Man Texting, Union Square, Manhattan, NYC|
|Watching the Block, Edgecombe Avenue, Manhattan, NYC|
|Siesta Time, Edgecombe Avenue, Harlem, Manhattan, NYC|
|In the Bosom of St. John, St, John Nepomucene, First Avenue, Manhattan, NYC|
|Among the 4000 I, Sara Delano Roosevelt Park, Lower East Side, Manhattan, NYC|
|Under the Alamo, Astor Place, East Village, Manhattan, NYC|
|Among the 4000 II, 59th Street Station, Manhattan, NYC|
|Winter Sunrise on Carnegie Hill, 93rd Street, Upper East Side, Manhattan, NYC|
|Melrose Sunset, 149th Street, the Bronx, NYC|