Viewing entries tagged
west village

Thanks, New York Times!

Save the Village (every Tuesday) Last year the Steven Kasher Gallery in Chelsea put on an exhibition with the photography of Fred W. McDarrah, who documented the changing scene of Greenwich Village since the 1960s. Now, the spirit of that show has taken the form of this walking tour, which includes stops at the places McDarrah captured on film: locales like Washington Square Park and the Stonewall Inn. At 10 a.m.; the tour meets at Christopher Park, Stonewall Place, at Seventh Avenue, West Village, savethevillagetours.com.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/21/arts/spare-times-for-aug-21-27.html

All Dylan Tour?

116 MacDougal Street, former home of the Gaslight Cafe.

116 MacDougal Street, former home of the Gaslight Cafe.

The death this week of Bob Johnston, who produced "Blonde on Blonde" and "Highway 61 Revisited" for Bob Dylan (plus classic albums for Johnny Cash, Leonard Cohen and many others) got us thinking about adding another tour to the Save The Village lineup - an all Bob Dylan tour.

Doing research for the Save The Village tours, we went on some other local tours - both walking and on those ubiquitous double decker buses - to see what was good, bad and ugly.

The saddest was at the end of one tour when a woman from Australia turned to me and said, "Mate... How can these people offer a Greenwich Village tour and not even mention Bob Dylan?! That is why I came on the tour!"

Agreed.

I know who John Dos Passos, ee cummings and Dashiell Hammet were, can point to the corner where the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire took place and know where on Grove St. that Thomas Paine wrote "Common Sense." And some people do come on tours for old stuff. But people also want to see places that they can relate to, from their own memories or experiences. That is why we point out where on West 10th St. Julia Roberts has an apartment. (Across from Edward Albee's old place).   

It would not be too hard to put together an All Bob Tour, encompassing where he lived, worked, played, visited, shopped... all below 14th St. (Maybe we'd stretch it up to Irving Place where one of his business managers we know had an office.)

161 W.  4th St., where Dylan first rented an apartment - a top floor studio facing the back.

161 W.  4th St., where Dylan first rented an apartment - a top floor studio facing the back.

The tour would likely include places he performed including just on MacDougal Street: The Folklore Center, Cafe Wha? (see photo), Gerde's Folk City, the Gaslight Cafe and Kettle of Fish; the Theatre de Lys on Christopher Street which was a favorite spot; also the Cedar Tavern on University Place, The White Horse on Hudson St., The Bitter End and the Village Gate (both on Bleecker Street) or he'd be in Washington Square Park listening to music on a Sunday afternoon (as famously captured in a McDarrah photograph elsewhere on this site); or places he lived or crashed such as 161 West 4th St. (see photo) , 94 MacDougal St. (see photo), the former Hotel Earle or One Sheridan Square.

And Fred W. McDarrah did photograph most of these places.

Hmmm...

94 MacDougal St., which Dylan owned in the 1970s. 

94 MacDougal St., which Dylan owned in the 1970s. 

A piece of Whitney History

Comment

A piece of Whitney History

The scaffolding is finally off the New York Studio School at 8-12 West 8th St., a stop on the Save the Village tour. The building was the original home of the Whitney Museum, which opened at that location in 1931. The museum came into being when the Metropolitan Museum of Art rejected Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney’s gift of over 500 modern paintings. So she opened up her own museum. It is now regarded as one of the finest on the planet and is housed in a magnificent new space on Gansevoort Street after years on the Upper East Side. It left 8th St. in 1954.

Anyway, the point here is that for the first time in decades, the carved stone name of the museum is visible above the main doorway to the building.  

Or at least it will be temporarily. The school will cover it up again soon with its own signage.

But we snapped a photo of the uncovered doorway. It looks fantastic. You'd think the school would want to keep it visible; it is an extraordinary and unique link to art history. Can't they put their name off to the side, or above it. Or both if they think someone will mistake it for the Whitney Museum.

It remains impossible to fathom why everyone doesn't think like we do. Such a mystery.

Comment