Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Santísimo Redentor

The Church of the Most Holy Redeemer, also known as Santísimo Redentor, on East 3rd St. between Avenues A & B. This is the view from the northwest, around A and 4th St. It's a Roman Catholic church, built in 1851-52. Originally it served the large German immigrant population that lived in the Lower East Side at the time, but today it has a Latino congregation and is a shrine to Our Lady of Perpetual Help.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

East River Anchor

This mid-19th century anchor sits at rest in the John V. Lindsay East River Park, near Grand St. No one knows what ship it's from; it was pulled out of the East River at some point and donated by the Schaefer Brewing Company in 1970.

Incidentally, I had no idea that Shaefer was originally a New York-based brewing company.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Boeing KC-97

It's been on my to-do list to check out Floyd Bennett Field for awhile now, and yesterday I happened to be dropping my mother off at JFK airport and so stopped by on the way home. This aircraft was parked outside a hangar. It's a Boeing KC-97 Stratofreighter, an aerial re-fueling tanker that operated from the 1950s-70s. This one has been refurbished by the Historic Aircraft Restoration Project (HARP) . The hangar wasn't open to the public when I was there, but apparently there are a bunch more vintage aircraft inside. A return visit is in order someday.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Millan House

Millan House, 116 East 68th Street. Built in 1931 by John D. Rockefeller, and designed by self-trained architect Andrew J. Thomas, this building is covered in ornamental carvings of various animals. Eagles, owls, rabbits, bats, fish, squirrels, dachshunds, bobcats, monkeys, storks, and more. Some of the building staff came out to watch me draw and had a debate over what the two animals at the top are. The doorman thought they were goats, the maintenance man said impalas. I sort of thought they were water buffalo. Some sort of ungulate.

Here are close up views of those bas relief animal-heads over the windows.

Rockefeller was a social progressive who built a lot of housing for poor and working class people, but this building sure wasn't one of them. In 1930, the area was already high income, and this was built for employees of the Rockefeller Institute, and it became a co-op in 1947. A real estate site says that a studio apartment (with two baths ... how big is this studio?) in this building sold last year for $2,185,000. This same site has the following list of pros and cons for the property, which I find hilarious ... especially that "Close to Hunter College" is a Con.

I couldn't find any reason why Thomas covered this building in animals, or where the name "Millan" comes from.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

May The Fourth Be With You

It's Star Wars Day! I'm sure someone out there has done a version of the famous Hildebrant poster for the original Star Wars using the new Episode VII characters, but I haven't seen it. So here's my version . . .