Archive for Architecture

To An Old Friend

Posted in American History, Beauty, Bridges, Landscape, New York, New York Landmarks, Photography, Rivers with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 27, 2015 by maine1nyc
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If inanimate objects could talk what might they say? As one who often photographs in Williamsburg, I could not help but see how this area is changing, and imagining what two of the most prominent Brooklyn icons might say to each other if they could.

Willie B: Well my old friend, we’ve both been around for a long time, me since I opened in 1903 have seen a lot of water under the bridge.

[fmr] Domino Sugar Plant: You sure have, and I can’t count how many cars and people have crossed you. Look at me, I’ve been at this location since 1882. I was the largest sugar refinery in the world. Sugar is not so popular these days, but at one time you just couldn’t get enough of it. Look at me now—many of my buildings were torn down. And I’m being converted into many different things, from condos, stores, who knows? I too, have seen a lot of time pass in this part of the world, and valued your friendship all these years. Remember I saw you grow up. Well I guess I’ll still be useful in some way, but I miss the good old days!

Willie B: I am sorry to see you go my friend, but glad you’ll still be around in some form. I, too, value your friendship and the time we’ve spent watching over Manhattan, Brooklyn & the East River. For as long as I’m here I’ll keep an eye on you and never forget you. We were both fortunate to have made our mark on history and be linked together forever in time.

Sunset Over the Former Domino Sugar Plant—2014

Posted in American History, Art, Beauty, Bridges with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 6, 2014 by maine1nyc
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“He used to say that he never felt the hardness of the human struggle or the sadness of history as he felt it among those ruins. He used to say, too, that it made one feel an obligation to do one’s best.” —Willa Cather, The Song of the Lark

 

Montauk Lighthouse Landscape

Posted in Aesthetic Realism, American History, Art, Autumn, Beaches, Beauty, Fall, Landscape, Lighthouse, New York, New York Landmarks, Parks, Photography with tags , , , , , , , , on November 13, 2014 by maine1nyc
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On a recent visit with my wife Carol to Montauk, LI to experience the last days of the fall season, I was reminded of just how beautiful this place really is. And as a special treat we were greeted with “breeze’n up” weather—great for photographing. As we approached one of the most photographed and historic lighthouses in the country, I was affected by how the surrounding reeds interacted with the lighthouse. The wind was blowing hard, with gusts of up to 50 mph, yet the reeds showed their strength & grace. They held their own, even as they swayed while the lighthouse stood firmly in the distance, somewhat blurred by the reeds. I wanted to capture not only the motion of the reeds, but also their individuality as they moved, because I felt this would highlight their graceful strength in relation to the stolid lighthouse.

I am stirred by this critically important essay, by Eli Siegel, “Art as Flexibility.” As he writes you get a new insight into how crucial this aspect of art is. It begins:

“Art shows reality as resisting, bending; asserting, fading—which is how it is. Reality is as it changes, and flexibility in art is a visual likelihood of a thing’s changing in space, while remaining what it is. As a stem of a flower sways in the wind, we have a sight of flexibility. Yieldingness as sight is much in pictures; the yieldingness that makes for strength is what we look for in art.”

Copyright © by Definition Press 1960, 1962, 1974

Your creative imagination will be inspired after reading this work. If you would like to see more of my photos of Montauk visit my web-site: harveyspears.com

Sleepy Hollow • Tarrytown Lighthouse

Posted in Aesthetic Realism, American History, Art, Beauty, Landscape, Lighthouse, New York, Parks, Photography, Rivers with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 17, 2013 by maine1nyc

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Nestled on the shores of the picturesque Hudson River, between the towns of Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow (Washington Irving country), lies one of many New York State lighthouses—Sleepy Hollow • Tarrytown Lighthouse built in 1883. The lighthouse is about 32 miles going north from NYC, just past the historic Tappan Zee Bridge. It was once so important to navigation and commerce, but now it still sits proudly on the Hudson, and gives one the thrill of beholding it today. The lighthouse joins a colorful and rich history, and the ever so immediate present with the river and surrounding hills bearing witness. It illustrates, I learned from my study of Aesthetic Realism, what every person is hoping to do a better job with—understand how our own past and the immediacy of the present can be better seen. The Sleepy Hollow • Tarrytown lighthouse can encourage us to be more thoughtful about how to better relate these ever so important opposites of past & present in ourselves.

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Happy New Year!—Sunset on the East River

Posted in Art, Beauty, Boats, Landscape, New York, Photography, Rivers with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 31, 2012 by maine1nyc

Here we are on the East River in NYC anticipating a beautiful sunset. And the Sun doesn’t disappoint. I am reminded that it’s the same world that gives us beautiful sunsets and horrific storms. These, I learned from Aesthetic Realism, are dramatic opposites. This area looks different since the storm but a sunset like this keeps it in perspective.

Ayuh, Halloween

Posted in Landscape, Lighthouse, Maine, Photography with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 28, 2012 by maine1nyc

A Williamsburg Sunday Morning

Posted in Art, Beaches, Landscape, New York, Photography, Rivers, Wildlife with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 21, 2012 by maine1nyc

Morning light is one of the most beautiful times of the day and that’s why I continue the tour of the coastal area of Williamsburg, Brooklyn on a beautiful Sunday morning. Important painters like Edward Hopper (1882–1967) knew how the morning light can bring out the wonder and meaning of objects and create a mood. Even the things we are familiar with, like a fire hydrant, subway tracks, or a bridge, can be seen as having more meaning because of how morning light is on them. And when we meet them in Williamsburg—well, we have something special. Here are a few images that show what I mean. (Click on photo to enlarge.)

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