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Thread: Terra-cotta in New York City

  1. #61
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    Building of the Day: 37-53 Linden Street









    Name: Row Houses
    Address: 37-53 Linden Street, between Broadway and Bushwick Avenues
    Neighborhood: Bushwick
    Year Built: 1888
    Architectural Style: Queen Anne
    Architect: Frank Keith Irving (aka F.K.Irving, F. Keith Irving)
    Other buildings by architect: 1332 Bergen St, CHN, 130-132 Prospect Pl, Prospect Hts
    Landmarked: No, but should be, as soon as possible.

    The story: These are exceptional houses. Everything about them says excellent residential architecture for an urban setting. The scale is small and low, matching the other houses on the block, also built around the same time, and contextual with the neighborhood. The side streets of Bushwick are of much smaller scale than Bushwick Avenue itself, which is a combination of large mansions and taller row houses and tenements. The brick is warm and evokes a sense of comfort and home. The houses are wide enough for comfort, with generously spaced windows. The dog leg stairway adds mass to the façade, and allows for the use of some great artistic and whimsical ironwork, which is remarkably intact throughout the group. And then we have the rest of the ornament.

    The American Victorian aesthetic was greatly influenced by the English Arts and Crafts Movement, begun in the 1860’s by William Morris and his friends and associates. Central to their philosophy are a love of beauty and pattern, and an appreciation of craftsmanship and artistic talent, a philosophy that would be come to be called the Aesthetic Movement, where beauty for beauty’s sake was treasured. This movement would cross the ocean and be manifested in many, many ways, and in architecture, that love of surface ornament and craftsmanship would be realized in the many kinds of ornament used in Romanesque Revival and Queen Anne architectural styles. Here we have a wealth of terra-cotta, fine ironwork, stained glass, and pressed metal cornices, all of great beauty, and unusual in their wealth of application in middle class homes.

    The terra-cotta is a standout, and these buildings are another testament to this building material’s strength and durability, as well as ability to be sculpted into so many intricate and beautiful patterns. The stained glass is more subtle, in the transoms above the door and windows, but adds to the charm. It must be a joy to climb those stairs that dance in wrought iron, and who wouldn’t smile while looking at the pressed metal cornices, alternating with Classical swags, and geometric designs reminiscent of Native or African patterns. What an unusual and inventive combination! The block is anchored by the corner house on Bushwick, which is similar, yet much more. We’ll look at that one in more detail on Thursday, to coincide with the wrap up of architect Frank Irving’s story, which is the topic of today’s Walkabout. Please check it out. His career is quite surprising.

    Finding the architect of these buildings has been the goal of Brooklyn’s architectural historians for the last 30 years. The discovery was made this year by a group of 11 students in Columbia University’s graduate program in Historic Preservation, who conducted a masterful study of Bushwick Avenue and surrounding blocks, with the goal of historic district(s) status, as well as preservation, urban re-investment and community empowerment. They were under the able direction of Professor Ward Dennis, who sent me the link to the Bushwiki website created by the students. It’s a great study, extremely well done, and an important document for historians, preservationists, and the people of Bushwick. Professor, I hope you gave them all A’s. http://bushwick-studio.wikispaces.com/

    http://www.brownstoner.com/brownston...of_the_311.php

  2. #62
    Forum Veteran MidtownGuy's Avatar
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    What a beautiful little block!

  3. #63
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    ^ Yes .


    Building of the Day: 282-290 DeKalb Avenue



    Address: 182-290 DeKalb Avenue
    Cross Streets: Waverly Place and Clinton Avenue
    Neighborhood: Clinton Hill
    Year Built: 1890
    Architectural Style: Queen Anne
    Architect: Montrose W. Morris
    Other buildings by architect: 285-289 Clinton, across the street, Arbuckle Mansion-315 Clinton Ave.
    Landmarked: Yes, part of Clinton Hill HD (1981)







    http://www.brownstoner.com/blog/2011...e/?stream=true

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  5. #65
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    A Moment in the Limelight, 30 Years Late

    By DAVID W. DUNLAP


    David W. Dunlap/The New York Times
    Abraham J. Simberg’s Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce Building. His rendering, below.



    The architect Abraham J. Simberg has finally received what he was looking for all along: professional respect and appreciation for the vibrant Jazz Age tower he inscribed on the downtown Brooklyn skyline in 1928 — the 30-story Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce Building, now a residential co-op, at 75 Livingston Street.

    It is the crown jewel in the new Borough Hall Skyscraper Historic District [PDF] along Court Street, created last year by the Landmarks Preservation Commission and sustained Feb. 1 by the City Council. In describing 75 Livingston Street, developed by Jacob Adelman, the commission said it was a work of “considerable elegance and sophistication,” with “projecting pavilions, chamfered corners and secondary setbacks that give the building visual interest well beyond what was required by the zoning regulations and equal to that of any skyscraper in greater New York.”

    Even opponents of the district, including the 75 Livingston Street co-op board, conceded the building’s quality. In fact, the board argued that it was already a conscientious steward of the property and did not need regulating.

    Mr. Simberg may be beaming somewhere, but not on this plane. He died in 1981, so obscure that he hadn’t been forgotten so much as he had never been remembered.

    His niece Sheila Rosenkranz, a retired teacher who lives in Manhattan with her husband, Jerry, recalled when Mr. Simberg invited her to join him at a convention of the American Institute of Architects, probably in 1967. He wanted to make her proud, to let her see how many heads would turn and hands would stretch out. They didn’t, though. No one at the convention recognized him.

    “He was trying to make a connection, but there was nothing left,” Ms. Rosenkranz said. “He wanted to show me, but there was nothing left to show.”

    Ms. Rosenkranz was so pleased when 75 Livingston Street claimed center stage recently that she dug out her uncle’s files, left to her by her mother, Rose Simberg Bernstein, who died in 1987.
    Besides an exquisite rendering of the Chamber of Commerce tower (shown above), Mr. Simberg’s papers include dozens of pictures of his smaller-scale apartment projects.

    There is the dedication program for his Mount Eden Center, a synagogue at 1650 Morris Avenue in the Bronx that opened in 5689 (1929) but is no longer standing. There is a charming painting of Erasmus Hall Academy in Brooklyn.

    Perhaps most tellingly, he had a copy of “History of the Skyscraper” (1929) by Francisco Mujica. It included 75 Livingston Street, saying that its setbacks created “a very original and attractive effect.”


    [David W. Dunlap]

    Mr. Simberg was born in Ukraine in 1892. The family emigrated at the turn of the century, moving from the Lower East Side to East Harlem to Brooklyn. He practiced architecture from 1920 to 1940 from an office in the St. James Building, Broadway and 26th Street. Most of his projects, chiefly walk-up apartment houses, were in Brooklyn and the Bronx.

    The mystery of why Mr. Simberg was given such a big project as 75 Livingston, seemingly out of the blue, may have been solved by Christopher D. Brazee of the landmarks commission, who noted in the designation report that Mr. Simberg and Mr. Adelman, the developer, were likely to have become acquainted while working on projects along Ocean Parkway in Brooklyn.

    With the Chamber of Commerce Building and Mount Eden Center to his credit in early 1929, Mr. Simberg must have been rapturous. “I’m sure he thought, ‘This is going to be the beginning of a wonderful career,’” Mr. Rosenkranz said. “What would the next big commission be? Whom would he hobnob with?”

    The answers, sadly, were “none” and “no one.” The stock market crashed. Mr. Simberg was never fully paid for 75 Livingston Street. About the only jobs available in the 1930s were tenement alterations. He and his wife, Esther, moved to Florida.

    When Ms. Rosenkranz visited, the subject of architecture didn’t come up. Instead, Mr. Simberg took her to see Hialeah Park race track and watch flamingos. After his wife died, he was unable to care for himself. His sister brought him back to Borough Park, Brooklyn, where he spent the rest of his days.

    The fact that he kept so many mementos of his briefly promising career suggests that Abraham J. Simberg trusted that his work would find admirers after all. Now it has.

    http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/20...30-years-late/

  6. #66
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    Yankee Stadium Overshadows This Lovely Art Deco Landmark

    by Jessica Dailey



    In 1931, architect Marvin Fine finished an eight-story Art Deco apartment building that was so beautiful, the creator included a terra cotta motif on the facade that showed him offering a model of the building for approval to the Parthenon. Located at 1005 Jerome Avenue, the 200-unit complex was named Park Plaza, as it faced the lush Macombs Dam Park. Its intricate, artistic detailing—polychome motifs and murals wrap around the building, carved animal sculptures (wolves, birds, squirrels, and frogs) guard doors and windows, and every cast iron gate has a different whimsical pattern—led it to be landmarked in 1981, but now the building gets lost in the shadow of its famous neighbor: Yankee Stadium. Nick Carr of Scouting NY recently photographed the building's insane Art Deco details, and we share a few of his images here.


    The building is directly across Jerome Avenue from Gate 2 of Yankee Stadium.







    This image shows a man offering a skyscraper to the Parthenon, which Forgotten NY explains is the architect offering a model of the building. Click through to Scouting NY for more photos.
    The Apartment Building In the Shadow of Yankee Stadium [Scouting NY]

    http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2013/0...o_landmark.php

  7. #67
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    Lucerne Hotel, Ephemeral New York, NYC, Style and a little Cannoli
    Built: 1904
    Designed by: Harry B. Mulliken
    Address: 201 West 79th Street at Amsterdam Avenue
    Landmark status:
    Just inside Upper West Side/Central Park West Historic District, designated 1990







    All above: http://newyorkitecture.com/2013/03/11/lucerne/


    http://www.nycstylelittlecannoli.com...west-side.html

  8. #68
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    Gramercy House
    Built: 1930
    Designed by: George and Edward Blum
    Address: 235 E 22nd Street at Second Avenue
    Landmark status:






    http://newyorkitecture.com/2014/07/08/gramercy-house/

  9. #69
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    210 East 68th Street
    Built: 1929
    Designed by: George and Edward Blum
    Address: 210 East 68th Street at Third Avenue
    Landmark status:




    http://newyorkitecture.com/2013/05/2...e-68th-street/

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