Monday, March 31, 2008

Downtown, Varick Street between Broome and Watts Streets


Mary Sargent © 2008 ……….. click to enlarge

Can you believe this? This building was in last night's photograph. I can't wait to walk Watts Street and find out what it is.

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Sunday, March 30, 2008

Downtown, Varick Street between Broome and Watts Streets


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

A block in transition. I love photographing these places, but there's a pang involved, because once I photograph them, I feel a connection. And I know tbe block will be leveled and a new cost-cutting (probably), bland, maybe ugly structure will go up. And I'll think about all we've lost and that will relate to all I'VE lost and before you know it, I'll be playing country music and drinking beer out of a bottle.

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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Downtown, Broome Street at Varick Street


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

This is the reason all those cars were creeping along Varick Street. Canal Street is even worse.

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Friday, March 28, 2008

Downtown, Varick Street between Dominick and Broome Streets


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

See all those cars reflected in the window? I was walking very slowly, stopping to take pictures, and they kept pace with me for blocks. (I know because one car provided musical accompaniment the whole way.) You'll see why tomorrow.

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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Downtown, Varick Street between Spring and Dominick Streets


Mary Sargent © 2008 ……….. click to enlarge


This, my friends, is Trump Soho. What could be more appropriate to the old cast iron district? If you click on the link and find your way to the neighborhood video, you will see a short black and white film of the SoHo neighborhood shot like a French movie, very attractive, intercut with shots of the Trump Soho, rendered, of course, since it doesn't actually exist yet. It seems to have a plot, involving a beautiful woman walking around SoHo and meeting, or picking up, a handsome man, and then somehow one gets the idea that she lets it be known she's staying at Trump Soho, and there are flashes of the as yet nonexistent bed, and it seems to be implied that, yes, that's where they're headed. Luckily they're both quite gorgeous in a tasteful sort of way or you might get the idea that the Trump Soho was the place to go for one night stands. I daresay these two are already in love and will spend many glorious nights at Trump Soho.

Trump Soho is a hotel condominium, which means that you can buy a place but you can't live there, you can stay there a certain number of days, but no more, and then you can rent it out the rest of the year. I don't know what the point is. Probably has something to do with money.

I have to confess that although I normally despise Trump and his massive ugly buildings, this one looks sort of elegant and it is covered with glass, which I adore. All things shiny and reflective.


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Downtown, Varick Street Between Vandam and Spring Streets


Mary Sargent © 2008 ……….. click to enlarge

These are the reflections I promised you two nights ago.

And below is a wider shot so you can see what you're looking at. This is the front of the building pictured last night.

Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Downtown, Vandam Street at Varick Street


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge


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Monday, March 24, 2008

Downtown, Varick Street, looking south from Vandam Street


Mary Sargent © 2008 ………….. click to enlarge

Another skyscraper going up. I've decided to add a label – construction – because I seem to be seeing it everywhere I go. Be patient while I add on the archival photos. More on the skyscraper later. Meanwhile, keep your eye on this handsome building because it will show up later in some reflections.

See map.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Downtown, Varick Street, looking south from King Street


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Okay, then. Although I'm still yawning, I think I'll be able to do a complete post tonight. Plus, I already put in the links for last night's post.

Last evening I went downtown to the opening reception for Her-Steria, at the Next Gallery at Metropolitan College, 75 Varick Street. Prior to this exhibit I didn't know there was a Metropolitan College, let alone a Next Gallery, and on Varick Street in this unnamed neighborhood, of all places, but, as you all know, there are many things I don't know. My friend, Barbara Lubliner, the gifted sculptor, and feminist with a sense of humor, had some work in the show and also did a performance piece wearing a slinky red dress with sculpted breasts strapped to her biceps.

But before all that, I walked down Varick to the gallery because I needed a photowalk. This is Varick Street looking south from King Street. Doesn't look very promising, does it?

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Downtown, Varick Street at Houston Street


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Sorry I'm so late. I shot this today in a whole new neighborhood which unfortunately doesn't seem to have a name. This is the neighborhood west of SoHo between the West Village and Tribeca. If anyone knows its name, let me know.

This photo is shot from the subway stop at Houston Street and that's the great Film Forum down the street. Tonight they're showing Contempt, Last Year at Marienbad and Blind Mountain. But that's not where I'm going. I'm going to – oh, I'm too sleepy to go on. I'll explain everything tomorrow.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Upper West Side, 72nd Street at Broadway


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Here's the new building, across the street from the old one. I remember watching as it went up, several years ago, and having expectations that there would be something inside, other than turnstiles and stairways. It is a larger than necessary building, built in the Beaux Arts style – I was thinking flower stalls and fruit stands. Shoe shine? Some amenities. But nothing. Just empty concrete space.

Barbara asked last night why did they build the new one? Mainly because people were practically falling onto the tracks, it was so crowded. Anyone who's been at that stop knows that the platform is unusually narrow, and that there were only 2 narrow stairways on each side. They extended the platform (served by the new building), and added 4 stairways and also made it possible to cross from uptown to downtown without paying another fare. They did NOT, however, widen the platform. Too expensive, says the MTA.

Anyone craving more pictures will find some nice ones here.

Upper West Side, Broadway, looking South from 72nd Street


Mary Sargent © 2008 …….. click to enlarge

So now it's back to the subway, too cold to continue. This is an important subway stop – 72nd Street on the No. 1 – because it has an actual building you enter before descending, making it a bit more dignified than those stairways cut into the sidewalk that you scurry down like some, uh, . . . well, I won't say what. You see the side of the building to the left. That's the old building. There's a new one across the street. Tomorrow night you will see it.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Upper West Side, 71st Street Between Riverside Boulevard and West End Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2008 ……….. click to enlarge

Here we see a pretty painted brownstone which serves to provide contrast to the tree in front. And how do we know it's a brownstone? It has an English basement (first floor halfway under ground) and a wide stairway to the second floor. And, of course, it's made of brownstone.

See map.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Upper West Side, 71st Street at Riverside Boulevard


Mary Sargent © 2008 …..….. click to enlarge

This is the building at the end of the block – you can see it in last night's photograph – the building on the right.

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Monday, March 17, 2008

Upper West Side, 71st Street Between West End Avenue and Riverside Boulevard


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………….. click to enlarge

I finally escaped the magnetic field of 71st between Broadway and West End and sailed right on through to the end of this street. According to Streetscapes, in October 2004, this street was then a complete dead end, stopping at a steep embankment over the old railyards. And the residents liked it that way. Along came Donald Trump with his apartment buildings and a new street was cut and named Riverside Boulevard, and consequently 71st street was cut through at the end of that year. But, as you see, not for traffic. Only pedestrians. Not beautiful but it does keep the pesky cars out.

And notice: the sun is out now. But don't notice: I've been saying Riverside Drive for the last five nights when it should be West End Avenue. I'm changing it right now. You would think. . .

This little map shows the 3 Trump apartment buildings just south of 71st Street.


View Larger Map




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Sunday, March 16, 2008

Upper West Side, 71st Street Between Broadway and West End Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2008 .…….. click to enlarge

This is Septuagesimo Uno, a vestpocket park (between two buildings), whose name means 71, as in 71st Street. It used to be named 71st Street Plot, but our Parks Commissioner, Henry Stern, renamed it in 2000 in honor of the millennium. Names were important to him. See question number 5 in the Gawker Interview.

It is .04 acre. That's 4 one-hundredths of an acre. Not big. But big enough to accommodate an amorous couple on the bench just out of view behind that evergreen tree. We spotted each other at the same time; they straightened up and I withdrew.

See map.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Upper West Side, 71st Street Between Broadway and West End Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2008 ……….. click to enlarge


This is a doorway to, not a church, but an apartment building. Pretty fancy. I kept looking at it. Something seemed odd.




Mary Sargent © 2008 …. .............................…….. click to enlarge

It wasn't until I looked at the photos at home that I realized what was peculiar about it. So it takes me a while. Look how plain the rest of the building is. No ornamentation at all.

Here's more of the building.


Mary Sargent © 2008 ……….. click to enlarge


See map.

Upper West Side, 71st Street Between Broadway and West End Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2008 … ….. click to enlarge


This is 71st Street looking back at Broadway from whence we came. See, there's the white house and the construction on the left.

Does it look sort of incongruous to you, like an old country road, something like that? I mean, you wouldn't think it's right off Broadway in a pricey part of the Upper West Side, would you?

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Thursday, March 13, 2008

Upper West Side, 71st Street Between Broadway and West End Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2008 …….. click to enlarge

I'm showing you this photograph so that we call all send waves of sympathy and compassion to the occupants of the white house.

This block of 71st Street is a bit higgledy piggledy: it has tall but old apartment buildings on the ends, then medium size apartment buildings, and a bunch of townhouses, all different, in the middle. And now a brand new condominium joining them.

This is what it says on that soon-to-be condominium's sign (just out of the picture): "Introducing the Classic Twelve Prewar Condominium to the Upper West Side".

What do you make of that? I didn't know you could build a prewar building.


See map.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Upper West Side, 71st Street Between Broadway and West End Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge


I finally got out of the house at 4:00 today and took the subway down to 72nd Street. I planned to walk 71st Street to its west end and then take West End Avenue downtown – then over 66th Street to Broadway and Barnes & Noble. However, it was colder today than you might think, especially if you walk really slowly and your shutter hand is ungloved and then you get close to the river and the wind is practically knocking you over. So I just walked back to 72nd and took the subway downtown. Yes, one stop. I was frozen.

I entered this little park, just off 71st Street, through the service entrance, luckily open. I'd love to come back in the spring when those trees bloom.

Spring. Not so far off.

See map.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Upper West Side, Broadway Between 109th and 108th Streets


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Those of you who care about such things will be troubled to notice that I went from 109th Street to 108 and then doubled back to 109-108. I share your unease. It's because I didn't get out for a photowalk today as I had planned. Let's hope tomorrow goes better.

There's that sun I was talking about. According to my metadata, this shot was taken at 6:19:32 p.m.

See map.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Upper West Side, 108th Street at Broadway


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Looks like a good place for a restaurant, right there on the corner, right? But restaurants have come and gone with great frequency over the last 25 years. Meanwhile the Indian CafĂ© down the block endures. It was there that I first had that green sauce with the intoxicating flavor – I didn't know it was cilantro back then. I'd never heard of cilantro. Oh, how our lives have been enriched.

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Upper West Side, 109th Street at Broadway


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Praise be to Daylight Savings Time. I left the house tonight about 5:30 to go see Luka's new bedroom redo and have dinner at Henry's and I took my camera because the sun was still out. Yay! I knew I'd be passing by two teeny sections I missed last time I walked that way.

That is a Subway sign in the window.

See map.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Upper East Side, Park Avenue Between 89th and 90th Streets


Mary Sargent © 2008 …….. click to enlarge

Another break in the wall.


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Friday, March 07, 2008

Upper East Side, Park Avenue Between 88th and 89th Streets


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Isn't that a pretty little apartment building, second one in? The AIA guide mentions it, but says only: "Tuscany in terra-cotta." and "Altered, ca. 1927." If they moved it to some other street, I'd live there.

Notice the stores at street level. Shocking. At least it's a Boghen Pharmacy and not Duane Reade.

See map.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Upper East Side, Park Avenue Between 86th and 96th Streets














Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

What did I tell you? These are four different blocks on Park Avenue between 86th and 96th and you'd almost think I was showing you the same block four times.

But there are a few breaks in the uniformity and you will see them soon.

By the way, I was able to discover that the very first building at the top of the page (on the northwest corner of 86th Street) was built in 1923-24 and that Condé Nast lived in the penthouse and gave great parties.

See map.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Upper East Side, 86th Street at Lexington Avenue






Mary Sargent © 2008 ………. click to enlarge

Upper East Side, 86th Street at Lexington Avenue

Back at the Lucida. Sorry to be regressive, but I do like these two photos. And all we have to look forward to is Park Avenue.

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Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Upper East Side, 86th Street at Lexington Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

And here's the other side of the street. This will be opposite this.

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Monday, March 03, 2008

Upper East Side, 86th Street at Lexington Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Today I went downtown to the old office to meet my buddy, Yvette, for lunch. She's still there toiling away, and every now and then, she needs to go out and have a good long lunch, complete with drinks. We went to Novita, seen here in October 2006. I hesitate to say the food wasn't very good because, after all Zagat's has raised its rating from 23 to 24 and Time Out says it's Italian food for grownups. But dammit, don't grownups disdain undersized wine glasses? Isn't that an automatic demerit? However, drawing on our inner resources, we managed to have a good time, in spite of the disappointing food (grilled salmon, pasta with lobster ragu) and small wine glasses.

Afterwards, I took the 6 train up to 86th Street, walked over to Park, then up to 96th Street. I chose this destination so I could tidy up my map, tie up some loose ends, NOT because Park Avenue is an exciting street to walk on.

But first, look here – it's the Lucida, which we saw last October.

See map.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Midtown, 58th Street Between Seventh Avenue and Broadway


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

I know some of you have been impatiently waiting for a truck shot. Here it is.

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Saturday, March 01, 2008

Midtown, 58th Street Between Seventh Avenue and Broadway


Mary Sargent © 2008 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

This is the front of the building I've been stuck on for the last couple of nights. See those painted green squares? I did a little checking on the web and discovered that a square is a construction symbol that means remove. I confess I said Oh, No! to myself.

See map.