Thursday, May 12, 2022

42nd Studio Anniversary in LIC

 

This May I celebrate 42 years since I found my studio in Long Island City. Back in 1980, LIC was a mainly industrial area in Queens with many factories and older low-rise homes. The East River offered spectacular views of Manhattan and it was an area easily accessible by subway. On week-ends the streets were quiet, during the week business hummed along. Over the years the neighborhood has changed dramatically, with major development of the waterfront and surrounding areas which are now dotted with towering corporate headquarters, apartment complexes and condos. Many of the older factories have either been torn down or converted, some to artists spaces. 

There is a bustling artist community to be found here, started in the 1970's when P.S. 1, the first public school in Queens, became an art space, giving artists studios in which to work for a year or two. One of the artists I met, Lou Kunsch, had a studio in one of the school's bathrooms before finding another studio when his residency ended.  (He was the first artist I met in LIC and we had our studios in the same building for years.) In one of P.S. 1's early exhibitions I remember seeing Christo wrapped radiators. The Museum of Modern Art took over and now the institution is known as MoMA P.S 1 and is a destination for those seeking out MoMA's contemporary art curated exhibitions and installations.

The rents have risen dramatically over the years and many artists who had studios in the neighborhood left. The advent of Covid saw a departure of many artists as well. Now, they seem to be coming back to the neighborhood with some art spaces having closed and others opening. Everything is cyclical in NYC and that goes for the rise and fall and rise again of neighborhoods and art scenes. 

So, to have been in my studio for 42 years is really something to celebrate. I am having a sale during the month of May with 40% off many of my works to celebrate this milestone and I look forward to creating many more paintings in the years to come in my LIC studio.





Wednesday, April 27, 2022

A Downtown View

 

A Downtown View
Oil on panel
6x6 inches

My friend Sandy was working a freelance job downtown awhile back in offices that had amazing views. She shared some photos she took with me and I was entranced by this view. I cropped and modified the photo a bit and painted a small study. The Woolworth Building and the distant top of the Municipal Building appear amid the old and new skyscrapers and of course, an ever-present construction crane.

A blue sky, a sunny day and a wonderful downtown view.

 

 




Friday, April 15, 2022

Blooming on Fifth II

 

Blooming on Fifth II
Oil on panel
8x8 inches

Spring has sprung in New York City. A beautiful, sunny and mild April day in the Big Apple. Heavy winter coats have been left at home as people crowd the streets and enjoy the day.

This painting is a view of a beautifully floral decorated window display on Fifth Avenue enclosing reflections in the window they surround. I so enjoy coming upon these thoughtful and eye catching window dressings around town.

Enjoy this Spring Passover and Easter week-end!



Wednesday, March 30, 2022

The Always Fabulous Chrysler Building

 

Blue Sky Chrysler
8x8 inches
Oil on panel

A new small painting to share.

I love looking at the Chrysler Building. The elegant soaring lines and distinct top never fail to bring a smile. Beautifully envisioned it stands proud on the New York City skyline. When I see all of the new glass box buildings going up all around and then think of the unique qualities of the Chrysler there is really no comparison. That older building has real class - it has soul.

Having painted the Chrysler Building several times in the past I know there will still be more views coming to life on my easel in the future.


Friday, February 11, 2022

A Music Venue No More

 

Remembering Tower Records
Oil on canvas
9x12 inches
SOLD

Around 4 years ago I received an email with an inquiry about the above painting - was it available and what was the price? I replied and didn't get a response. Well, a few days ago, I received another email from the same sender. He had been going through old emails and came across the one he'd previously sent - time does fly! Once again, he inquired if the painting was available and the price, I responded and this time around he purchased the painting. It brought back fond memories of when he had worked in the city back in the 1990's and had spent many happy hours in the store. Just goes to show you never know, when the next call or message will show up expressing interest in a painting.

The scene of the former Tower Records on Broadway was a happening place, filled with music all hours of the day and night. It was painted in 2007, not long after the store had closed, a victim to the changing trends in how people purchased and listened to music. Having had this painting in the studio for a number of years I'm thrilled it has found a good home where I know it will be appreciated and enjoyed.


Tuesday, January 25, 2022

"Who's on First?"

 

Who's on First
Oil on panel
8x8 inches

Walking around the East Village last summer after having dinner with friends a corner on First Avenue caught my eye. I have a real affection for this neighborhood of New York - its colorful history, the diverse small mom and pop shops, and especially the late 1800's architecture with ornate terracotta and fire escapes. Never tire of exploring this area and finding inspiration for my paintings.