Tag Archive | NYHS

Stewart Studio Graffiti Door

Stewart Studio Graffiti Door
All Photos By Gail

Vision or vandalism? New Yorkers had different reactions to the “tags” scrawled on subway trains in the 1970s. Many saw them as a sign of urban blight. Artist and photographer Jack Stewart saw them as a new American Art Form.

Stewart Studio Graffiti Door

Stewart befriended many of the young graffiti writers, who by 1973 gathered regularly in his studio. Recognizing their irrepressible urge to mark every surface, he offered the inside of his bathroom door as a canvas, with the understanding that they would leave the rest of his studio untouched.

Stewart Studio Graffiti Door Detail

Stewart Studio Graffiti Door, Details

Stewart Studio Graffiti Door Detail

Stewart Studio Graffiti Door Detail

The door is a remarkable relic of 1970s New York City.

A Gift of Regina Serniak Stewart, the Stewart Studio Graffiti Door was Photographed in the New York Historical Society in NYC.

Stewart Studio Graffiti Door

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Eye On Design: Tiffany Wisteria Lamps Designed by Clara Driscoll

Tiffany Wisteria Lamps
Photo By Gail

One of Tiffany Studios‘ most popular models, the Wisteria, was priced as $400 in 1906, placing it among the firm’s most costly lamps. The glass selection for the two lamps (both circa 1901) seen in the above photo created two dramatically different interpretations of the same design. One has a refined color palette ranging from pale blue to azure and cobalt, while the other displays bold contrasts of blue and white clusters.

Wisteria abounded in LC Tiffany’s leaded glass windows and on the grounds of his country estate, Laurelton Hall, and although the vine was a Tiffany favorite, Clara Driscoll’s correspondence identifies her as the designer of the iconic Wisteria lamp, which is composed of nearly 2,000 tiny pieces of glass. Designs for the Trumpet Creeper, Grape, and Apple Blossom, each sold with the same treelike base, followed shortly after the Wisteria.

Photographed in the New York Historical Society on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.

Modern Art Monday Presents: Norman Rockwell, The Problem We All Live With

The Problem We All Live With
All Photos By Gail

After resigning from his forty-seven year tenure with The Saturday Evening Post in 1963, Norman Rockwell (18941978) embraced the challenge of addressing the nation’s pressing concerns in pared down, reportorial style. The Problem We All Live With (1963), his illustration for Look magazine, is based upon an actual event, when six-year-old Ruby Bridges was escorted by US Marshalls to her first day at an all-white New Orleans school. Rockwell’s depiction of the vulnerable but dignified girl clearly condemns the actions of those who protest her presence and object to desegregation.

White Dress
White Dress Worn By Model Lynda Gunn

Rockwell commissioned this white dress, and two others like it, in different sizes from a local Stockbridge, Massachusetts seamstress. He was not sure yet of the age or size of his model, and he typically posed several people in the same role before deciding who best fit the part. For the child in The Problem We All Live With, he ultimately selected his neighbor, Lynda Gunn.

All Photos Taken at The New York Historical Society in Manhattan.

Eye On Design: Thigh High, Platform Kinky Boots Designed By Gregg Barnes

Kinky Boots Designed By Gregg Barnes
Photos By Gail

By the end of the 17th Century, high heels were considered women’s shoes. Indeed, so strong was the connection between shoes and gender that a man wearing high heels could be arrested in New York under a law that forbade people from congregating in public while “disguised by unusual or unnatural attire.” First passed in 1845 to suppress masked political protests, this law was later used to justify the arrest of cross-dressing performers and bar patrons. Many similar laws persisted until the late twentieth century, when changing fashions and cultural norms rendered them unenforceable

Kinky Boots Worn By Actor Billy Porter
Kinky Boots Worn By Actor Billy Porter

Today, high-heeled shoes have appeared everywhere, from boardrooms to bedrooms to courtrooms. They have been called many things: Ultra-feminine, aggressive, provocative, misogynistic, glamorous, fetishistic, immobilizing, erotic, empowering, stylish — just about everything but comfortable.

Kinky Boots Designed By Gregg Barnes

Gregg Barnes designed these patent metallic leather high-heeled platform lace-up boots in 2013  for the Broadway musical Kinky Boots, which is based on the true story of a struggling shoe factory that survived by producing high-heeled fetish footwear in men’s sizes.

Photographed as Part of Walk This Way: Footwear from the Stuart Weitzman Collection of Historic Shoes, on Exhibit Through October 8th, 2018, at the New York Historical Society, Located at 77th Street and CPW in NYC.