Wednesday, December 2, 2009

West Village Walk-Up

Huff and Puff

"Hudson and Jane"
Oil on canvas
24 x 18 inches

I delivered a painting this morning to a collector in the West Village of Manhattan. The apartment was in an old, walk-up and getting the large and heavy painting up the narrow, winding stairs was tricky. I was huffing and puffing by the time I reached my destination. Living in an urban environment I tackle a lot of stairs on a daily basis. I live in a walk-up. I take the subway daily. My studio is located in a walk-up. You'd think I'd be used to this by now. I've made a promise to myself that if and when I ever move again, it is going to be to an apartment with an elevator!

Today's adventure reminded me of this painting that I was commissioned to do several years ago. The building I found myself in this morning was not unlike this scene in the West Village. These old, turn of the century buildings can still be found all over the city, in stark contrast to the newly-built glass boxes now in vogue. I like to look at the old buildings, notice their details and even their decay and I like to paint them. Over this past week-end friends from out-of-town called unexpectedly and I spent several pleasant hours visiting with them. We found ourselves on 3rd Avenue in the 50's and I pointed out a stretch of tall office towers. I remembered working in that neighborhood in the '70's and '80's when low rise, 3-story buildings like the one in my painting abounded. I watched those office towers being built. How New York City's infrastructure keeps up with all the continuous development never ceases to astound.

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