In the fifty years since it was established in 1965, the New York City Landmarks Law has preserved for generations to come a remarkable number of significant buildings that represent New York City s cultural, social, economic, political, and architectural history. Not only do the exterior facades of these buildings fall within the law s purview, but, since 1973, many of their stunning interiors as well.
This book tells the colorful stories of 47 interior landmarks from the oldest to the youngest from the grand Italianate and infamous Tweed Courthouse, the centerpiece of the largest corruption case in New York history, and the glamorous Art Deco Rainbow Room, constructed shortly after the repeal of the Prohibition to the modernist 1967 Ford Foundation Building, whose garden-filled atrium exemplified sustainable design well before the concept became fashionable, and was hailed as one of the most romantic environments ever devised by corporate man.
Located throughout the five boroughs, the interior landmarks include banks, theaters, office building lobbies, restaurants, libraries, and more spaces in which New Yorkers have worked, learned, governed, been entertained, and interacted with their communities for decades.
Readers will learn about their original construction and style, their exceptional design features, materials, and architectural details then of the challenges to preserving them whether they were unanimously accepted or hotly contested in legal battles the restorations or re-imaginings that took place, and the preservationists, philanthropists, politicians, and designers who made it possible. Combining strong visuals and thorough research, this valuable reference work will fascinate all readers with an interest in the city s history."
- ISBN-13: 9781580934220
- ISBN-10: 1580934226
- Publisher: Monacelli Press
- Publish Date: September 2015
- Page Count: 240
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2015-10-19
- Reviewer: Staff
Gura, a design historian, and Wood, a professor at Columbia University's Graduate School of Architecture, shed light upon New York City's dazzling internal spaces that have been preserved through the political process of landmarking. As architect Hugh Hardy notes in his introduction, "Although buildings are principal contributors to the urban fabric, interiors are where we spend most of our time." Readers will want to spend as much time as possible in the 47 interior spaces presented here, ranging from the embellished elegance of the stately Federal City Hall to the sophisticated minmalism of the Seagram Building. Some locations are likely familiar: Grand Central Terminal and Radio City Music Hall are intrinsically public spaces. Others are much harder to stumble upon: the shuttered City Hall Subway Station, for example. Interior preservation is a different proposition from the merely exterior. As building uses change, their internal configurations must do likewise. Hardy observes that "interpreting appropriate' change is inherent in designating interiors , often requiring enlightened compromise." Some of these compromises have raised hackles; some have not. This beautifully illustrated, informative volume invites readers to judge for themselves. 200 color illus. (Oct.)