New this spring:
The first guidebook to the Art Deco wonders of the great American metropolis, based on the walking and bus tour itineraries I’ve developed over the past 30 years. The book includes an introductory essay describing the Art Deco phenomenon, followed by eleven walking tour itineraries in Manhattan—each accompanied by a map designed by legendary New York cartographer John Tauranac—and a survey of Deco sites across the four other boroughs. Also included is a photo gallery of sixteen color plates by nationally acclaimed Art Deco photographer Randy Juster.
What a wonderful opportunity for a New Yorker to write a book about Grand Central Terminal! And what a challenge to find something new to say about it. So we (the New York Transit Museum and I) organized the book to focus on not just the building, but also its 100 years of history at the center of New York – its special place in the city, its role as a haven for soldiers and sailors during World War II, its function as a town square where thousands gathered to watch moonshots on giant TV monitors. And we unearthed hundreds of quotations whose voices bring those 100 years of history to life.
Originally published in 1987 while the Twin Towers still stood – brash and controversial, a new symbol of the city and the country – this book offered the first serious consideration of the planning and design of the World Trade Center. It benefited from interviews with figures still on the scene, and archival documents still available for study. This new edition – expanded to include copies of some of those archival documents – is offered as a memory of the World Trade Center as it once was. It is also offered as a reminder of a more innocent time, when the Center stood as a symbol, certainly, of hubris, wealth and power, but also of the conviction that in New York City, Americans could do anything to which they set their minds.
From the beginning, the people who planned the subway’s construction considered it, in words actually written into the contract, a “great public work” worthy of attractive design. Published in 2004, as a project of the New York Transit Museum, to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the opening of New York’s first subway line – the IRT – this book celebrates an often overlooked aspect of the subway system: its art and architecture. Glorious photos by Andrew Garn.
The Albert was not just any hotel: Over the course of a century – from the 1880s through the 1970s – the Albert played a significant role in New York‘s cultural life, housing guests ranging from Robert Louis Stevenson, Hart Crane and Thomas Wolfe to The Mamas & The Papas and the Mothers of Invention, with many, many more in between. The list of famous residents easily puts the Albert in the same league as such better-known hotels as the Chelsea and the Algonquin.
The French take great pride in their consulates and embassies. To celebrate them, the French government has commissioned a series of illustrated books about their outposts around the world. This volume is devoted to the Consulate in New York, at 934 Fifth Avenue, one of the last free-standing mansions on what was once “millionaires’ row.” Built in 1925-26 for Charles Mitchell, President of National City Bank, and designed by Walker & Gillette on the model of an Italian Renaissance palace.