Friday, November 6, 2009

American Radiator Building

Rising above Bryant Park, in New York City, is the magnificent American Radiator Building (also known as the American Standard Building). Laying in the shadows of the more famous Empire State Building, this dramatic 23 story skyscraper has stunning art deco details in gold and black brick on a neo-gothic form.
Designed by architects Raymond Hood and John Howells, Hood based the design on his famous submission with Eliel Saarinen to the Chicago Tribune Building competition.
The American Radiator and Standard Sanitary Company built the structure as their headquarters (Hood had designed radiator covers for them for years) but later sold it to American Standard Company and then it passed on to Clio Biz. Since 1998 it has been the Bryant Park Hotel. I think this building really sums up all of the expectations one has of a glamorous skyscraper in New York.The original bronze and marble entrance on 40th street: the canopy is of course not original.Rene Paul Chamberlain did all of the gold glazed terra cotta sculptural reliefs. I love that the windows are true to the originals with steel casements (due in part, no dout, to the buildings landmark status).
Georgia O'Keefe immortalized the building shortly after it was built in 1927 in her painting below, "The Radiator Building at Night." Don't forget to look up next time you're in Bryant Park!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Fall in NY

Nothing beats fall in NY. I took this shot above in Bryant Park behind the library. I love the play of the foliage against the detail of the lamp. Think the lamp designer had this in mind?
The trees and mums in front of the library were like a breathe of fresh air against the city gray.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Buildings play dress up too

I spent the past weekend in NYC for Halloween and discovered that buildings play dress-up too. Faux-Tudor anyone? This just cracked me up in Midtown along 5th avenue! I hope you all had spooky weekends!