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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Rain, Rain Go Away

Raining, in Midtown
Photo by myself in Midtown.

A mother and daughter walked arm in arm, down Fifth Avenue.

It's been raining steadily for the last few days. The skies have been overcast and chilly.

This month we've had record rainfall in New York. Central Park had a total of 10.69 inches this March, surpassing the 10.54 inches recorded in 1983.

Related posts: In the Rain, Midtown, Hailing in the Rain, Midtown and Wet and Not So Wonderful, Downtown.


Tuesday, March 30, 2010

On Hotels and Hype, along Fifth Avenue and Beyond

Hotel Andaz, NYC
Photo by myself at 5th Avenue and 41st Street, in Midtown.

Just out of frame on the left, an enormous graphic reads, 'What is your Andaz?' surrounded by curly-q's. The right of the graphic is filled with items signifying New York today: fire hydrants, people in love on the subway platforms and falafel carts.

You might think the billboard is leftover from Valentine's Day (perhaps it was unveiled at that time?). It's actually an advertisement for the Hotel Andaz, the new luxury arm of the Hyatt chain. A new hotel will open at this location, this Spring.

As in any large scale endeavor, you have to a) create a lot of hype and expectation, b) open to the public and on time, then c) earn rave reviews, which then generate more hype, and so on.


Remember when I stumbled upon old jazz great Guiseppi Logan by chance in Tompkins Square Park? Well, fortunately for us all, he will be performing this week in Philadelphia. The Ars Nova Workshop, a non-profit experimental jazz group in Philly, is organizing the event.

Logan will be performing in a jazz quintet at the Philadelphia Art Alliance. Tickets are a mere $12.

Click here for the Ars Nova website. My photo of Mr. Logan is there, along with articles and a sample of Logan's music.

Related posts: The View from New York and the Plaza Hotel, The Royalton, Renovated and Guiseppe Logan, Performing in Tompkins Square Park.


Monday, March 29, 2010

Rainy Day, Outside Trinity Church

Outside Trinity Church, NYC
Photo by myself outside Trinity Church, at Broadway and Rector Street.

It's been rainy and grey here for the last several days, which is typical for Spring.

Above, the first Trinity Church was built in this spot in 1698. The current building was constructed in 1846. Alexander Hamilton is buried outside in the cemetery.

The church provides a sense of openness; all around it are buildings over 10 stories high. It's a visual relief to see a spot of green amongst the asphalt and concrete.

Related posts: Trinity Church, at Dusk, Grace Church in Color and St. Thomas Church, Fifth Avenue.


Sunday, March 28, 2010

Tete-a-Tete, in Times Square

In Times Square
Photo by myself in Times Square, at 42nd Street and Broadway.

An animated conversation outside the crossroads of Times Square, earlier this year.

Along the left, under the Dow Jones logo, an electronic tickertape displays headline news 24/7. There are planters and gates just to the right, which close the street off from vehicle traffic.

Last summer, parts of Broadway were closed to traffic to reduce gridlock. Broadway runs diagonally through Times Square, cutting through the street grid and messing up the timing of street lights.

Since then the plan has worked - loads of people lounge in the street at cafe tables and part of the area is marked as a bike lane. This February, Mayor Bloomberg declared the pedestrian mall permanent. Accidents have decreased significantly.

I never thought I'd like the idea of the pedestrian mall, but I've come around. It's nice to see people enjoying the street.

Related posts: Our Commander in Chief, Above 7th Avenue, On View in Times Square and Street Photography and Looking Up in Times Square.


Saturday, March 27, 2010

Outside Three Lives, in the Village

Three Lives & Co., The Village
Photo by myself at West 10th Street and Waverly Place, in the Village.

Three Lives & Company is an independent bookstore in the Village. Its wooden display cases and bright red door make this a distinctive storefront.

Don't get me wrong - every neighborhood has at least one Barnes and Noble Bookstore. However there are still some independent booksellers left.

Many specialize, in order to stand out. Kitchen Arts and Letters on the Upper East Side and Bonnie Slotnick Cookbooks in the Village sell current and out of print cookbooks, for instance.

Archivia Books on the Upper East Side and Urban Center Books cater to architects, decorators and architecture lovers. The latter was located in what used to be the Helmsley Palace on Madison Avenue for 30 years, and only recently closed. It will re-open this Fall in another location.

Visit Partners & Crime for mystery books, East West Living for books on Asian culture and holistic life. If the theatre is more your cup of tea, visit The Drama Bookshop in the Theatre District.

I wish the list were endless. I remember when the Shakespeare and Co. store on the Upper West Side closed several years ago, New Yorkers feared they would lose all the small bookstores. Many New Yorkers boycott the larger chains on principle. (There are a few Shakespeare and Co. locations left).

For a nifty list in the Times about specialty bookstores, click here.
For lists of small bookstores according to general area, click here.

Related posts: Outside Biography Books, Bleeker Street, Searching for a Bargain, at the Strand and Browsing Around, in the Village.


Friday, March 26, 2010

Pretty in Pink, Downtown

All in pink
Photo by myself at Beaver and Wall Streets.

A woman in hot pink hailed a cab outside Delmonico's.

A steak house, Delmonico's has been in operation since 1837 and is supposedly 'America's first fine dining restaurant'.


Here's to the end of a long week. TGIF, everyone!

Related posts: Hailing in the Rain, Midtown, In the Rain, Midtown and Hailing a Cab, Outside the Hudson Hotel.


Thursday, March 25, 2010

Charging Through Wall Street

Wall Street, NYC
Photo by myself at Bowling Green, in the Financial District.

Visitors swarmed around the Charging Bull statue near Wall Street, despite the chill and drizzle.

A bronze sculpture by Arturo Di Modica, the bull was installed in 1987. It is one of the most well-known pieces of public art in New York, and has become a symbol of Wall Street. A 'bullish' market is an optimistic one.

You wouldn't believe that the sculpture is 11 feet high at its tallest point. It seems lower to the ground, its posture inviting. People were constantly in front of it (and behind it!) taking photographs.

Wall Street, NYC

Related posts: Basta Cosi (Enough), Art, for Public's Sake and At the Brooklyn Museum - The Dizzying World of Murakami.


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Cobblestones Underfoot, in the Financial District

Ulysses' Bar, NYC
Photo by myself at Stone and Pearl Streets, in the Financial District.

You'd be surprised by parts of the Wall Street area. Some of the oldest streets in Manhattan are here, lined with buildings with an Old World flavor.

The Manhattan street grid is non-existant in this neighborhood, and narrow streets twist and turn. Mark reminded me that ships once docked here and merchants traded goods in the streets. You can almost hear the clamor of history.

Above, Ulysses' House offers a full menu of hearty food, beer and spirits. I'm sure it's packed with financial types during lunch and after hours.

I am certain this street has been featured in movies. It is absolutely charming, only a few blocks away from the New York Stock Exchange. I don't know this area well, so each turn of the corner was like making a discovery.

Ulysses' Bar, NYC

Related posts: Reflections Apres Happy Hour, Cheers and Chin Chin.


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Living Wall, Lincoln Center

Growing Wall
Photo by myself at the David Rubenstein Atrium at 63rd Street and Broadway, on the Upper West Side.

This relatively new interior space is open to the public and considered part of Lincoln Center. The atrium was designed by the established and innovative New York architecture firm Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects.

Williams and Tsien designed another New York cultural building, the American Folk Art Museum, just a few blocks away. They have also participated in the Robin Hood Initiative, where noted New York Architects redesigned libraries in public schools throughout the five boroughs.

Live concerts occur weekly and are free to the public. There's a fountain and two walls made of plants. You can while away an entire afternoon here, with free wifi and a cafe run by Tom Colicchio of Top Chef fame.

For more information about the David Rubenstein Atrium, click here.
To see more exciting work from Williams and Tsien, click here.

Related posts: The Mother of All Supermarkets, Beer, Wonderful Beer and Ramen Noodles, in the East Village.


Monday, March 22, 2010

Bright Lights and Cured Meats, on the Upper West Side

West Side Market, New York
Photo by myself at West Side Market, on the Upper West Side.

I'm perhaps one of the only people who will go bananas over cold cuts. This huge assortment of meats at West Side Market was so brilliantly lit, I could not resist taking a photo.

New Yorkers know how to eat. Surprisingly, a good number of us know how to cook too, and our foodstuffs reflects that fact. The selection of prepared foods and ingredients at West Side Market is incredible. Every nook and cranny is jam-packed with goodies.

West Side Market has several locations in Manhattan, as well as a website where you can order online. True to name, each store is located on the west side. The photo above was taken at the 110th Street and Broadway store, near Columbia University. Other locations include 77th and Broadway, and 7th Avenue and 14th Street, in Chelsea.

There's also a location in New Jersey, which is even further west, across the Hudson River.

Related posts: The Mother of All Supermarkets, Beer, Wonderful Beer and Ramen Noodles, in the East Village.


Sunday, March 21, 2010

Looking Out to Central Park West

Across Central Park
Photo by myself above Central Park.

The park is much prettier when filled in with leaves. Across the way lies the west edge of the park, Central Park West. In the foreground is the roof of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The building with the two towers to the right of center is The San Remo on West 74th Street. I took a photo last winter outside, here.

Two buildings to the left of the San Remo is The Dakota on West 72nd Street, where John Lennon lived. Lennon was shot outside the building in 1980. Here's a photo of the entrance.

It didn't occur to me until now that as an island and with Central Park, New York has several skylines. There are those skylines along the waters edge, and those along this vast park, which spans 50 blocks.

Related Posts: The World Above Central Park, Fall from Above, Imagine, Central Park and The Rooftops on Central Park West.


Saturday, March 20, 2010

The World Walks By, on Fifth Avenue

Fifth Avenue, NYC
Photo by myself on Fifth Avenue, around 16th Street.

An older man was propped up on the sidewalk while the world walked by.

I've been using the word 'homeless' to describe a large category of people.

There are those who are truly homeless, who are in obvious need of a shower and change of clothing. Some amass heaps of found objects, shopping carts and bags on the sidewalk, which they call their home. Many suffer from mental illness.

Others live on the margins of society, but are not completely 'homeless'. They look cleaner, healthier. These folks are probably itinerant. They might sleep in shelters or SROs (single room occupancies), where you can rent a bedroom and share a bathroom.

Our local New York news channel, NY1, reports that homelessness in New York City increased by 1/3 this past year. After canvassing the streets, city volunteers found over 3,000 people living outside or in the subways. The shelters are also reporting record numbers.

I've read that many families and individuals that wind up in shelters stay there for a short time. They've encountered a spot of bad luck, like losing a job or losing their apartment. A brief stay in a shelter is what they need before getting on their feet again.

For the NY1 article, click here.

Society's Trash, Homeless Woman, 34th Street Platform and Homeless Man, Central Park.


Friday, March 19, 2010

Enjoying the Air, in Central Park

In Central Park
Photo by myself in Central Park.

I took some photos while driving by in a cab through Central Park, Thursday morning. It was a spring-like day and people were out enjoying the nice weather. I saw dozens of runners and horse carriages, hot dog vendors and people walking about. The park was busy, considering it was a week day.

A well-dressed man caught my attention. He looked like the type to carry a pocket watch, and give lollipops to children. He didn't look too happy, having his photo taken.

In Central Park

I had a hard time choosing between the above photos to show you. Neither of them are that great, in my opinion. What do you think?

Imagine, Central Park, What's in a Name, at Tavern on the Green and Along the Edge of Central Park.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Celebrating Spring, in Union Square

Singing in Union Square
Photo by myself in Union Square.

Yes, it's happened. Spring has sprung. We had a beautiful day Wednesday.

The streets and open spaces were crowded, as a result. Union Square was filled not only with the Farmer's Market and artists selling their work, but also musical performers and several tables of chess games.

One musical group was ringed by a good-sized crowd. Everyone was clapping and stomping to the beat. Some of those in the audience were dressed in honor of St. Patrick's Day.

Taiwanese Festival, Union Square, Sound the Horns, in Union Square and Playing in the Rain, Union Square.


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Greetings from a New York Pie, in Midtown

NY Pizza
Photo by myself on Fifth Avenue, in Midtown.

I got a wave and a smile from a slice of New York pizza, Tuesday.

New York is known for our thin crust pizza - the many Ray's Pizza locations, John's Pizza in the Times Square area, Lombardi's in Soho, Grimaldi's in DUMBO. And we have a few places that offer pies with ridiculously fancy toppings and Sicilian pies, too.

I had my first 'Grandma's Pizza' in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, at Casanova, on McGuiness Boulevard.

What is Grandma's pizza, you ask? It's a square pie that's covered in plum tomato sauce mozzarella, garlic and olive oil. The crust is thicker than 'thin crust' pizza, but not so doughy as a Sicilian pie. Trust me, it is deelish. (My mouth is watering, just thinking about it).

Here's a video of a guy named Chef Bruno, demonstrating how to make a Grandma's pizza. He is not known for speed, nor spelling! No criticisms, please, or he breaka your legs.

Cow Appreciation Day, Fifth Avenue, Big Green Monster, in Midtown and Step Lively.


Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Stand Clear of the Closing Doors, Underground

Subway sign, NYC
Photo by myself on the subway.

I usually observe the unspoken New York code of ethics regarding photographing on the subway, especially in the mornings. However, I could not resist taking this photo during a particularly grueling commute to the city, Monday.

It may have been the intense rain all weekend that did the subway in. There were severe delays and crowded platforms.

As usual on such days, when the train finally arrived, everyone crowded in and the doors had trouble closing. This delays the train even more, which backs up the trains behind the train in question, which then creates greater crowds on the platform.....

You get my drift.

Anyway, the above subway poster attempts to educate people about not blocking the subway doors. It is very, very annoying when the doors are held open for stragglers. Hence the graffiti. Ha.

Visions of a Cheeseburger, Midtown, Free Hugs, Union Square and Napping Together, Underground.


Monday, March 15, 2010

Buried among Towers, in Midtown

Midtown, NYC
Photo by myself in Midtown.

I'm sure most people think of modern towers when they think of Midtown. As you can see however, there are still some older walk-up buildings interspersed among the taller buildings.

After a while, you get used to being in elevator buildings. I never really encountered elevators on a daily basis before living here. Now, it is second nature.

Unspoken elevator etiquette that most New Yorkers heed to includes holding the door open for stragglers, using 'indoor' voices, and pressing the button of your floor as soon as you get in the car.

Many of the newer elevators have LCD screens showing news headlines. It's odd to be in a little space where everyone is looking in the same direction. Unfortunately, the 'news' shown is never really great. It's usually a mix of celebrity gossip and weather forecasts. Sad!

Transit for the Masses, Dusk Among Towers and The Towers Near Riverside Park.


Sunday, March 14, 2010

On New York Buildings, High and Low

Fifth Ave, NYC
Photo by myself from a cab on Fifth Avenue, on the Upper East Side.

Yesterday we got 4 inches of rain in Central Park and it's due to rain all day today. Above, a photo from a sunnier time.

Fifth Avenue is lined with stately buildings, most of them built before the second World War. As you can see, all the surfaces of these beauties are decorated, even the undersides of balconies.

The cornices (decorative friezes at the very top) are sometimes are wrapped in copper, which turn green after many years of weathering. Pre-fabricated copper is less expensive than cut stone, lighter in weight and makes for a distinctive look.

ps: I was asked about the building across from the Met, in Friday's post. The building is 998 Fifth Avenue, a gorgeous building designed by McKim Mead and White at the turn of the last century. Architecturally, the building is pristine, and you cannot beat the address.

998 Fifth Avenue
Photo by myself of 998 Fifth Avenue. Note the beautiful stone panels that adorn the building facade.

Last year, a five-bedroom apartment at 998 Fifth was listed in the Times for $34 million dollars. For the incredible listing with photos, click here.


There is a great article in the Times this week about another New York building, on the other side of the tracks.

Much, much less fancy, 104 Bowery was at various times a Yiddish Theater, music hall and flophouse. It is now an inexpensive hotel with rooms for $130 a night, catering to Chinese tourists.

The Times has some incredible photos from the flophouse era, when beds went $5 a night. The last resident was named George and refused to leave, despite being offered $75,000. In 2005 he was finally ordered to vacate by the courts, and was dragged out by the police.

Check out the slideshow for photos of George and his home. You can read the article here.

In the Rain, Midtown, On Rain and the Brooklyn Bridge and Fashion Accessories, Coming Soon.


Saturday, March 13, 2010

Umbrellas, in Midtown

Rainy Night
Photo by myself in Midtown.

It rained on Friday, and the forecast for the weekend is much more of the same. Most New Yorkers carry black umbrellas, but there's sometimes a smattering of color.

On windy days, umbrellas are useless. You'll encounter heaps of broken and discarded umbrellas on the sidewalk, tossed by their frustrated owners.

In the Rain, Midtown, On Rain and the Brooklyn Bridge and Fashion Accessories, Coming Soon.


Friday, March 12, 2010

High Above the Metropolitan Museum

The Met from above
Photo by myself on the Upper East Side.

I visited a job site across the way from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Oh, what a view!

Due to foreshortening, the towers behind the museum look like they're just behind the museum. In reality, the buildings are on the opposite side of the park, on Central Park West.

Taxi!, Columbus Circle at Dusk and Fixing Flats in the Streets.


Thursday, March 11, 2010

Over the Shoulder in the Garment District

Candid, Midtown
Photo by myself in the Garment District, around Seventh Avenue and 40th Street.

The Garment District has been reduced to just a couple blocks now, at 38th and 39th Streets, between Seventh and Eighth Avenues.

The stores selling fabric and trim are interspersed with bookstores and fast food places. During my time living in New York, I've seen many fabric stores close. Some of the larger established ones, like Mood and Rosen and Chadick, have relocated to second floor locations.

Home sewers make the visit to New York for the nice selection of fabric. Some of the finest cashmeres and wools can cost over $100 a yard. A jacket requires at least two yards of fabric, and a coat at least three.

Taxi!, Columbus Circle at Dusk and Fixing Flats in the Streets.


Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Hailing a Cab, in Times Square

Hailing a cab, Times Square
Photo by myself around 39th Street and Seventh Avenue.

Oh what a familiar sight.

For non-New Yorkers, please note that the light at the top of the oncoming cab is not lit up This means the cab is not available - it already has passengers, or the cab driver is on break.

The cab is also unavailable when sides of the light are on. Tiny words will appear, saying 'Off Duty'. Only when the number of the cab is lit, in the middle of the light, is it available for hire.

The best way to get a cab is to stand at a street corner, near heavily trafficked street. This can be tricky when you're on a quiet street in the Village. On rainy days and during rush hour (8:00-9:30 am, 5:00-7:30pm), it's a bit harder to find a cab.


By the way, if there's ever a time to visit Times Square, it's around dusk.

It's a magical time - the sky is an electric shade of blue, growing steadily darker. Headlights switch on, and all the towering signs are eye-poppingly bright.

Taxi!, Columbus Circle at Dusk and Fixing Flats in the Streets.


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Off-Kilter, on 18th Street

No Parking
Photo by myself at Broadway and 18th Street.

I took this photo earlier this year, as an example of how over-the-top New York signage can be.

When I got home, I realized the guy in the photo was wearing a kilt. Weird.


I took the above photo in the middle of January, when it must've been very chilly. Now that it's actually warming up, it's time to think about the shape of one's legs.

How is that winter flab doing? Hm...I have to admit that Mark and I have been cooking and enjoying the comfort of our sofa a bit too much. This fellow's legs are much nicer looking than my ham hocks!

Fashionista, Not, Reasons to be Pretty, Times Square and Flower Power, Bryant Park.


Monday, March 8, 2010

Waiting for the Train, at Atlantic Pacific Streets, Brooklyn

Subway Platform, Brooklyn
Photo by myself at the Atlantic/Pacific subway station, in Brooklyn.

A photo during a typical morning commute.

The crowd at this major subway hub in Brooklyn is generally laid back. Other subway stations might be packed with people in suits, reading the Wall Street Journal.

Many people bring magazines, books and electronic books for their commute. Some play games on their phones or listen to music. Others actually put pencil to paper for Soduku or crosswords.

Many commuters take naps. A handful of people chit chat. The latter is generally verboten. It's an unspoken law among New Yorkers that you not speak loudly on the subway, especially in the morning.

The subways are everyone's living room, and who wants to listen to your conversation when they're struggling to wake up? Nobody!

Life Goes On, Columbus Circle, Acrobatics, Below 34th Street and Stealing a Nap, Underground.


Sunday, March 7, 2010

City Portraits - The New York Public Library

New York Public Library, Main hall
Photo by myself, inside the New York Public Library, at 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue.

The Main Branch of the New York Public Library is gigantic. You can come in without a library card, tour around or use the reading rooms.

Interesting exhibits are always on display. Currently showing are maps of New York from 1600 to the present, an exhibit honoring the 250th anniversary of the play 'Candide', and a display of three New York women photographers from the early 20th century.

Admission is absolutely free. For the website of the main branch building, click here.


New York Public Library, Stair

Most New Yorkers don't realize the history of the New York Public Library site. It is located exactly where the city reservoir used to be in the 1800s. The reservoir was a gigantic enclosure that was built up and raised from the street. No telling how sanitary it was.

Click here for an 1879 photo of the reservoir from the Library archives.

New York Public Library, Upper Stair Hall
From one of the upper stair halls in the Library.

New York Public Library, Reference Desks
Reference tables within one of the reading rooms. Decorative carvings cover all the oak furnishings.

New York Public Library, Main Reading Room
Free wifi and natural light make the main reading rooms a popular hang out. The clerestory windows on either side face Fifth Avenue and Bryant Park.

If you visit, do explore the upper floors of the building. There are wonderful mezzanine views of the main entrance hall and upper stairs. Two giant reading rooms are on the third floor, connected by a low wooden reference area. The entire space is probably the size of a football field.

Reference books line the reading rooms, with a walkway above with more books. The result is a very human space, despite the enormous overall size.

There are computers for public use, and free wifi if you bring your own laptop. Not long ago, people avoided using the public libraries because a lot of homeless would lounge there. I think the wifi has changed peoples' attitudes about this place.

Each neighborhood has at least one library; this location is the main branch and is the most recognizable. As long as you have proof of New York City residence, you can obtain a library card, and borrow one of their millions of books for free.

City Portraits is an ongoing, once-in-a-while installment featuring parts of New York.

City Portraits - Greenwood Cemetery, Brooklyn, City Portraits - The East Village and City Portraits - The High Line, in Chelsea.


Saturday, March 6, 2010

Within the New York Public Library, in Midown

New York Public Library
Photo by myself in the main branch of the New York Public Library, at 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue.

Built at the turn of the last century, this stately building is one of the most recognizable landmarks in New York. Its marble facade sits atop a flight of broad steps, at the corner of Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street.

I'd forgotten how beautiful the building was until I revisited this week. I was seriously astounded at every turn.

More photos from my visit, tomorrow.


The Times has a lead story today on another incredible architectural relic, in Detroit. The main train station there is in complete disrepair, the last train having run 20 years ago.

The have some amazing photos of the building, which is 18 stories tall. It is sad to see such a once-majestic building in shambles.

You can see the article here.

Architecture, a Glorified Profession, Going Postal in Midtown and In the Shadow of Alice Tully Hall, on the Upper West Side.


Friday, March 5, 2010

Older Birds, on Fifth Avenue

Odd couple, NYC
Photo by myself on 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue, in Midtown.

A couple walked down the sidewalk, Thursday near the New York Public Library. Mark looked at my photo and said, 'That guy doesn't look too happy.'

Thursday, we had the briefest glimmer of something that could be termed 'almost Spring'. It was definitely not warm outside, but just warm enough that I could walk around without a jacket.

Most people were out in their winter gear but they were a tad more spritely than usual. Hooray for that.

Confronting Reality on TV, There's a Moon Out Tonight and Step Lively.


Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Urban Art Form, Downtown

Truck graffiti, East Village
Photo by myself somewhere in the East Village.

A truck was completely covered in graffiti in beautiful colors. You can barely make out that it belongs to a company on Delancey Street.

Is this art? hm....I wouldn't park the truck in the Guggenheim, but it's certainly better than a grimy white truck and it brightens my day. What do you think?


Speaking of graffiti, this week readers of the City Room Blog of the Times wrote in questions to a graffiti artist named Lee Quiñones. Quiñones began painting NYC subway cars in the 70s. This was before subways were made to resist spray paint.

Quiñones' work has been exhibited at the Whitney Museum of Art and the Museum of the City of New York. He does most of his work on canvas now. You can see his entire range of work on his blog.

Amazing to think that art in the most banal places is accepted by such museums, and that the artists are now interviewed by the Times. Note, not everyone accepts graffiti as 'art'. Many of the readers' questions are about defacing property.

To read more about the questions and answers to Lee Quiñones, click here.

The Truth in Advertising, in the East Village, Ninja Assasins, in the East Village and Abandoned Lot, East Village.


Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Shacking it up, in the City

Juicy Lucy's, East Village
Photo by myself on Avenue A and East 6th Street.

New York is not completely comprised of modern skyscrapers or traditional townhouses. Nor do we just have bars and fancy pants restaurants, Korean delis and diners.

This tiny wood lean-to is a juice bar called Juicy Lucy's. They serve made-to-order vegetable juices and fruit smoothies, as well as healthful wraps and yogurt.

Despite its size, this establishment has garnered many rave reviews. Click here to view them.

A La Carte, I'll Have What She's Having, at Katz's Deli and Waiting for Pommes Frites, on Second Avenue.


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Outside 40 Bond Street, in Noho

40 Bond Street, NYC
Photo by myself outside 40 Bond Street, in NoHo.

A slight man was standing in front of 40 Bond Street, the latest Ian Schrager-developed condominium building. This avant-garde building was designed by noted Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron, and is comprised of 27 luxury loft apartments.

The exterior of 40 Bond Street is made up of steel parts encased in green glass. Each apartment enjoys 11-foot ceiling heights, modern kitchens and a 24-hour on call concierge.

A slight man was standing outside the building while I was there. I wasn't able to get a very good photo of the building, unfortunately. The sculptural element is a screen, made of cast aluminum and inspired by graffiti.

Apparently one-bedrooms went for $3.1 million. Three-bedrooms were sold for $9.94 million. Dollars.

For more information about the building and more comprehensive photos, click here.


Mark had suggested I take a photo of the building above. 'Why don't you see that cool new building on Bond? You know, the one Bono was thinking of buying into?'

Half my trouble was figuring out where Bond Street was. I'd walked down it and past it many times but my brain failed to register the location.

It turns out that Bond Street was more centralized than I thought. It's a tiny street 3 blocks in length, between Broadway and Bowery. It's the equivalent of East Second Street.

The Flatiron, in Detail, A Modern Icon, in New Canaan, Connecticut and Living in Style on Riverside Drive.


Monday, March 1, 2010

On British Bands and Mafia Dons, Downtown

Album Cover, East Village
Photo by myself in the East Village, around Second Avenue and Fifth Street.

These blokes look like a British rock band, don't they? I'm not sure where they're from, but for some reason I don't think they're New Yorkers.


Sunday, I walked around the East Village. Mark and Rupert were having some play time in Tompkins Square Park. It was a drippy and slushy. You could virtually hear the snow melting.

Out of nowhere, Mark texted me:'Tony Soprano is at the dog run.' Mark meant the actor James Gandolfini, best known for playing a mobster on the HBO series The Sopranos.

So like any crazed fan, I walked very quickly to the park. Lo and behold, there he was, James Gandolfini looking very much like himself. I saw him talking to a few people, then playing with his big black and white dog.

I know what you're thinking: after that intro, where the heck are photos of James Gandolfini, lady?!?!

A New Yorker at heart, I just could not bear to take his photograph. You see, when New Yorkers see celebrities, we tend to leave them alone. (Plus, who would want to mess with an ex-mafia boss?)

So that's what happened. I capped the lens and walked away.

(My photos of Tim Gunn last summer are a different story. He was being interviewed on camera and many people were snapping photos).

Faces in Fashion, in Bryant Park, Decisions, Decisions and Lost in the Crowd.