Participate in Archtober 2013 as the architect of a Building of the Day!

Archtober 2013 is coming! Archtober is soliciting nominations for projects to be included in the month-long festival of architecture in New York City. Each day in October 2013, we will feature a Building of the Day, which will be published in the Archtober blog, appear in the series calendar, and will have a day-of lunchtime tour.

Please submit one photo (with credit) and a brief description (225 words) of your built project. The building can be located in any of the five boroughs of New York City, and does not need to be a recently completed project. The building must be publicly accessible, and available for a lunchtime public tour in October 2013. The building must be submitted by the architect, who is responsible for clearing the copyrights of the images submitted. The deadline for the first round is March 31st, 2013.

Please email submissions to archtober@aiany.org, with the subject line “Building of the Day.”

Building of the Day #31 Poe Park Visitor Center (December Edition)

Building of the Day #31
Poe Park Visitor Center
2640 Grand Concourse Avenue
Bronx, NY
Toshiko Mori Architect

 


© Daniel Fox/Center for Architecture

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
"'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door-
Only this, and nothing more."
 


© Daniel Fox/Center for Architecture

And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me- filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating,
"'Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door-
Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door;-
This it is, and nothing more."
 


© Daniel Fox/Center for Architecture

Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately raven of the saintly days of yore;
Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;
But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door-
Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door-
Perched, and sat, and nothing more.
 


© Daniel Fox/Center for Architecture

And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door

 

Participate in Archtober 2013 as the architect of a Building of the Day!

Archtober 2013 is coming! Archtober is soliciting nominations for projects to be included in the month-long festival of architecture in New York City. Each day in October 2013, we will feature a Building of the Day, which will be published in the Archtober blog, appear in the series calendar, and will have a day-of lunchtime tour.

Please submit one photo (with credit) and a brief description (225 words) of your built project. The building can be located in any of the five boroughs of New York City, and does not need to be a recently completed project. The building must be publicly accessible, and available for a lunchtime public tour in October 2013. The building must be submitted by the architect, who is responsible for clearing the copyrights of the images submitted. The deadline for the first round is March 31st, 2013.

Please email submissions to archtober@aiany.org, with the subject line “Building of the Day.”

Building of the Day #29 Gracie Mansion (December Edition)

Building of the Day #29
Gracie Mansion
Carl Shurz Park
East End Avenue & 88th Street
Drake Design Associates / Gracie Mansion Conservancy
 


© Julie Trébault/Center for Architecture

Archtober continued into December with a make-up tour to Gracie Mansion, previously cancelled due to Storm Sandy. The good news is that the historic waterfront mayor’s mansion made it through the storm unharmed.


© Julie Trébault/Center for Architecture

On a sunny and temperate December day, designer Jamie Drake and the Gracie Mansion Conservancy welcomed us into the home, with the added bonus of holiday décor. The brightly colored walls and furniture, true to the American Federal style, bring cheer to the interior no matter the season.


© Julie Trébault/Center for Architecture

Laura Trimble Elbogen is the Partnership Programs Manager at the AIANY/Center for Architecture. A native of Indianapolis, she moved to New York upon graduation from Princeton with a degree in art history (AB 2007). Previously she worked for Richard Meier & Partners. As an artist she draws and paints architectural scenes of daily life. She is part of the team initiating Archtober: Architecture and Design Month NYC. ltrimble@aiany.org

Building of the Day #29 Gracie Mansion (Hurricane Sandy Version)

Building of the Day #29
Gracie Mansion
Carl Shurz Park, East End Avenue at 88th Street
Drake Design Associates / Gracie Mansion Conservancy



© Benjamin Kracauer

We went on a 3:00 p.m. walk to Gracie Mansion and dodged flying debris and lashing gusty winds. The East River looked like the ocean, with white caps, and surging surf. 


© Benjamin Kracauer

Carl Shurz Park was closed, and even from the perimeter we could see downed trees. We were not alone though, a passer-by chatted with us about how Fiorello LaGuardia used to invite children to sled around the park, setting up hot cocoa and cookies under cover in the mayor's mansion.


© Benjamin Kracauer

The rain is picking up, our dog Sunny hugs close to the buildings to stay out of the wind.  The sky is getting darker and our tenth floor windows are sporadically rattling in their old wood frames. 

Ladder 13 has had a couple of local calls. 

Cynthia Phifer Kracauer, AIA, is the Managing Director of the Center for Architecture and the festival director for Archtober: Architecture and Design Month NYC. She was previously a partner at Butler Rogers Baskett, and from 1989-2005 at Swanke Hayden Connell. After graduating from Princeton (AB 1975, M.Arch 1979) she worked for Philip Johnson, held faculty appointments at the University of Virginia, NJIT, and her alma mater. ckracauer@aiany.org
 

© Benjamin Kracauer

Building of the Day #28 Eldridge Street Synagogue

Building of the Day #28 
Eldridge Street Synagogue
12 Eldridge Street
Herter Brothers; Gans Studio
 


© Benjamin Kracauer

In the midst of the Hurricane Sandy coastal evacuation, we visited a gem on the Lower East Side.


© Benjamin Kracauer

Founded in 1887 by Eastern European immigrant Jews, the Eldridge Street Synagogue has been a National Historic Landmark since 1996, and is now splendidly restored.


© Benjamin Kracauer/Center for Architecture

Amy Stein Millford did a great job giving the Archtober faithful an excellent history. 


© Benjamin Kracauer/

There's still a worshipping congregation, and the Museum at Eldridge Street occupying the building's gracious lower level where she works as Deputy Director. 


© Benjamin Kracauer

The Museum has executed a significant restoration and artistic renewal of this great symbol of religious freedom on the Lower East Side.


© Benjamin Kracauer

The first time I saw Eldridge Street Synagogue was in the early 90’s, when the shell had been stabilized, but its future was still in question.  It was a wreck, almost a ruin, yet filled with the exuberance of its founders, reveling in their new-found freedom in the United States of America—five pointed stars everywhere. 


© Benjamin Kracauer

At that time, I was working on the restoration of another synagogue, B’nai Jeshurun, also Victorian Moorish in design, here executed in 1880’s paint, stencil and stained glass.


© Benjamin Kracauer

We spent a lot of time with the new rose window by Kiki Smith and Debby Gans. It was decorative, it didn’t open a hole into the meaning of the cosmos, thankfully. It beautifully turned the existing stenciled plaster wall below into luminous stained glass above through a melding of traditional and modern techniques, Victorian colors, modern ideas. . . exquisitely up to date.


© Benjamin Kracauer

What I really like, though, is the brooding dark bimah and the secretive ark, the feeling of furrows in the floor where all those praying feet scuffled, hunched, and swayed.


© Benjamin Kracauer

WEATHER ALERT:  Archtober 29 and Archtober 30 will be rescheduled.  Too much Sandy and too little public transportation.  Stay tuned.  Stay safe.


© Benjamin Kracauer

Cynthia Phifer Kracauer, AIA, is the Managing Director of the Center for Architecture and the festival director for Archtober: Architecture and Design Month NYC. She was previously a partner at Butler Rogers Baskett, and from 1989-2005 at Swanke Hayden Connell. After graduating from Princeton (AB 1975, M.Arch 1979) she worked for Philip Johnson, held faculty appointments at the University of Virginia, NJIT, and her alma mater. ckracauer@aiany.org

 

 

© Benjamin Kracauer

Building of the Day #27 Museo del Barrio

Edificio del Día #27
El Museo del Barrio
1230 Fifth Avenue
Gruzen Samton Architects
 


© Laura Trimble Elbogen/Center for Architecture

Me cuesta creer que hace solo unos tres años, la entrada del Museo del Barrio se parecía más a  la entrada del orfanato de la película de terror de J.A. Bayona que la entrada de un museo.


© Laura Trimble Elbogen/Center for Architecture

Y esta semejanza no es pura coincidencia: de hecho, el Edificio Heckscher, que ahora hospeda al museo, fue, originalmente, un orfanato. Sin embargo, no se caracterizaba como un orfanato a lo Oliver Twist. El edificio, construido  en 1924 en el estilo Beaux Arts, contenía un teatro con murales de escenas de historias de hadas, y una serie de paneles de azulejos  creados por William Henry Grueby, uno de los alfareros más reconocidos de su tiempo.


© Laura Trimble Elbogen/Center for Architecture

Para William Singer, AIA, nuestro guía y parte del equipo de Gruzen Samton que  restauró el edificio, fue un real desafío darle una cara nueva al museo, sin descuidar la preservación de estos tesoros y del edificio en sí.

El resultado fue una restauración que media entre lo moderno y lo tradicional, entre un pasado dedicado a la infancia, y un presente dedicado a la cultura latina.


© Laura Trimble Elbogen/Center for Architecture

El patio principal, con su galería al estilo medio punto y un enrejado de madera, alude a la arquitectura latina tradicional.


© Laura Trimble Elbogen/Center for Architecture

A través de la entrada de vidrio, un visitante puede vislumbrar toques de colores vibrantes, característicos de la cultura latina, pero también el pórtico clásico de la entrada original, que se ha convertido en un pasaje de circulación entre los espacios públicos y las galerías de arte.


© Laura Trimble Elbogen/Center for Architecture

Durante nuestra visita, un grupo de familias celebraba el Día de Todos los Muertos en el espacio de eventos. Aunque abundaban las caras infantiles pintadas como calaveras, el carácter tétrico del museo ha sido reemplazado por un sentimiento de comunidad. El Barrio ha abierto sus puertas.  

Camila Schaulson es Gerente de la Oficina del Instituto Americano de Arquitectos en Nueva York. Nació en Santiago, Chile, y estudió arquitectura e historia del arte en Columbia University.

Building of the Day #26 Irish Hunger Memorial

Building of the Day #26
Irish Hunger Memorial
290 Vesey Street
1100 Architect
 


© Camila Schaulsohn/Center for Architecture

Rounding the bend into the final week of Archtober, and still a little woozy from Heritage Ball and Party at the Center revels, the undaunted Archtober faithful were treated to both Juergen Riehm, FAIA, and David Piscuskas, FAIA, explaining the story underlying their collaboration with artist Brian Tolle and landscape architect Gail WittwerLaird Gail Wittwer-Laird. The Irish Hunger Memorial, which opened in 2002, sits in what was for many years a sandy beach in Battery Park City. 


© Camila Schaulsohn/Center for Architecture

Its great cantilevered "fan" form supports a sloping garden and gestures to the Hudson River, Ellis Island, and the Statue of Liberty beyond.  


© Camila Schaulsohn/Center for Architecture

In heavy use for a decade, the grassy furrows are now fenced off. Look, don’t touch. 


© Camila Schaulsohn/Center for Architecture

Too bad about that. I could imagine how swell it would be to lay in the sloping brushy grasses, being buzzed by migrating chickadees and helicopters, surrounded by labeled stones from each of Ireland’s 32 counties. 


© Camila Schaulsohn/Center for Architecture

The Hunger Memorial calls attention to a historic situation that resulted in a million Irish dying and another million leaving the country.  Still subject to multiple interpretations, the memorial articulates that diversity of opinion by telling the story in fragmentary quotes, illuminated from behind, as strata in the Irish limestone brick base. 


© Camila Schaulsohn/Center for Architecture

There’s a stone-by-stone reproduction of a roofless cottage ruin, too, but not a single black potato.

"It’s also light-years beyond the figurative Irish Famine Memorial in Boston, with its emaciated bronze subjects – spines exposed in every vertebrae – crying drips of pigeon poop," says Dan Fox.

Cynthia Phifer Kracauer, AIA, is the Managing Director of the Center for Architecture and the festival director for Archtober: Architecture and Design Month NYC. She was previously a partner at Butler Rogers Baskett, and from 1989-2005 at Swanke Hayden Connell. After graduating from Princeton (AB 1975, M.Arch 1979) she worked for Philip Johnson, held faculty appointments at the University of Virginia, NJIT, and her alma mater. ckracauer@aiany.org

 

 

 

 

 

 


© Camila Schaulsohn/Center for Architecture

Building of the Day #25 Whitney Studio

Building of the Day #25
Whitney Studio
945 Madison Avenue
LOT-EK

http://archtober.org/2012/sites/default/files/field/image/Outsidein_0.jpg
© Geoff Montes/Center for Architecture

From LOT-EK Principal Ada Tolla's description of the Whitney Studio’s design and construction process, to one of our Archtoberite’s neon-yellow attire that perfectly matched the studio’s window glazing, today’s tour was all about things meant-to-be.


© Geoff Montes/Center for Architecture

In referring to her firm’s collaboration with the Whitney Museum, Tolla spoke of a true marriage between architect and client; a marriage that is physically manifested in the interaction between the Whitney Studio and the Breuer Building. Although your first thoughts regarding the installation of used industrial containers into a Brutalist structure may seem more “Odd Couple” than “Happily Ever After”, it turns out that the pairing was serendipitous.

In order to raise capital for the construction of the Whitney’s new home, located in the Meatpacking District and designed by Renzo Piano, the museum was forced to sell adjoining property that housed its offices and educational spaces. The museum reached out to LOT-EK which was presented with the challenge of building a semi-temporary structure within the museum’s lot in a short period of time.


© Geoff Montes/Center for Architecture

Enter the shipping container: the dimensions of the southern portion of the Whitney’s sculpture court are just large enough to fit three side-by-side 20-foot long containers, stacked to create a flexible studio space suitable for the multiple educational programs run by the museum.


© Camila Schaulsohn/Center for Architecture

The two structures also reflect off each other in such a way that, although the buildings do not actually touch, it becomes unclear what is happening within one structure and what is happening between the other. A true marriage, indeed.

The Whitney Studio’s diagonal cuts place the museum’s educational programs center stage, as opposed to hiding them in basements or offices not accessible to the public. By filling in the moat that separates the public from the cultural institution, the Whitney Studio symbolically bridges the ivory tower to the street. 

Camila Schaulsohn is the Office Manager at the Center for Architecture. She is a recent graduate from Columbia University, and holds a double major in art history and architecture. info@aiany.org

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

© Geoff Montes/Center for Architecture

Building of the Day #24 Grand Central Terminal

Building of the Day #24
Grand Central Terminal
89 East 42nd Street
Reed and Stem / Warren and Wetmore
 


© Daniel Fox/Center for Architecture

Grand Central Terminal is the best public building in the city. Timeless finishes, patina, the overwhelming sense of soaring, of dignity: it’s unmatched. And with its counterpart and competitor Pennsylvania Station long-gone, it stands as a testament to countless preservation battles that helped shape and solidify the City’s strong landmarks law.


© Laura Trimble Elbogen/Center for Architecture

For a building that I thought I knew pretty well, our tour guides had plenty of juicy nuggets (shout-out to George Monasterio R.A., Chief Architect of Metro-North Railroad, and Frank Prial, Jr., AIA, Associate Partner at Beyer Blinder Belle).


© Daniel Fox/Center for Architecture

Did you know that the staircase that now gives easy access to the dining concourse below and Apple Store on the eastern balcony is an addition? Though it was in Reed & Stem/Warren & Wetmore’s original plans, it was never built for lack of funds and interest: in 1913, the city east of Lexington Avenue was left to abattoirs. BBB’s renovation thoughtfully realized what the original architects couldn’t.

© Daniel Fox/Center for Architecture


And did you know that there are little worn spots in Vanderbilt Hall’s marble floors? The oak benches that have since been moved downstairs used to be here; only countless travelers’ imprints remain. That’s another thing about the building: not just a container of people, it’s a container for the restlessness of travel past and present.


© Daniel Fox/Center for Architecture

Oh...and there's a tennis court on the fourth floor!

I never knew the building before its immaculate restoration, but oh my, look at it now.

Daniel Fox is AIA New York’s Communications Manager and Liaison to the Landmarks Preservation Commission. He holds a B.A. in American studies from Wesleyan University and a M.S. in historic preservation from Columbia University. dfox@aiany.org

 

 

 

 

 


© Laura Trimble Elbogen/Center for Architecture

Pages