Friday, March 18, 2011

New York

Velocity of Money

by Allen Ginsberg (1986)

I’m delighted by the velocity of money as it whistles through the windows of Lower East Side
Delighted by skyscrapers rising the old grungy apartments falling on 84th Street
Delighted by inflation that drives me out on the street
After all what good’s the family farm, why eat turkey by thousands every Thanksgiving?
Why not have Star Wars? Why have the same old America?!?
George Washington wasn’t good enough! Tom Paine pain in the neck,
Whitman what a jerk!
I’m delighted by double digit interest rates in the Capitalist world
I always was a communist, now we’ll win
an usury makes the walls thinner, books thicker & dumber
Usury makes my poetry more valuable
my manuscripts worth their weight in useless gold -
Now everybody’s atheist like me, nothing’s sacred
buy and sell your grandmother, eat up old age homes,
Peddle babies on the street, pretty boys for sale on Times Square -
You can shoot heroin, I can sniff cocaine,
macho men can fite on the Nicaraguan border and get paid with paper!
The velocity’s what counts as the National Debt gets higher
Everybody running after the rising dollar
Crowds of joggers down broadway past City Hall on the way to the Fed
Nobody reads Dostoyevsky books so they’ll have to give a passing ear
to my fragmented ravings in between President’s speeches
Nothing’s happening but the collapse of the Economy
so I can go back to sleep till the landlord wins his eviction suit in court. 

Diego Rivera, Frozen Assets, 1931

 Charles Sheeler, View of New York, 1931

Hubert Sattler, New York, 1854

A bulger of a place it is. The number of the ships beat me all hollow, and looked for all the world like a big clearing in the West, with the dead trees all standing. (Davy Crockett, 1835)

 Alfred Stieglitz, Winter - Fifth Avenue, Camera Work XII, 1905

Edward Steichen, Flatiron Building ,1904

 Louis Eilshemius, New York Roof Tops, 1908

 William Louis Sonntag, The Bowery at Night, c. 1895

 John Sloan, Sixth Avenue Elevated at Third Street, 1928

 Charles L. Goeller, Third Avenue, 1934

 Reginald Marsh, Why Not Use the “L”?, 1930

 Philip Evergood, Nude By The El, 1933

New York is a sucked orange. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

 Leon Kroll, Summer, 1931

 Philip Pearlstein, Two Models in a Window with Cast Iron Toys, 1987

 Carl Gustaf Nelson, Central Park, 1934

Whenever spring comes to New York I can't stand the suggestion of the land that come blowing over the river from New Jersey and I've got to go. So I went. (Jack Kerouac)

Agnes Tait, Skating in Central Park, 1934 

New York Lego

 Weegee, The Rich Harassed by the Poor, c. 1940

There are certainly numberless women of fashion who consider it perfectly natural to go miles down Fifth Avenue, or Madison Avenue, yet for whom a voyage of half a dozen blocks to east or west would be an adventure, almost a dangerous impairment of good breeding. (Jules Romains)

 George Gilbert, American Faces, New York, c.1940

 Weegee, Vegetable Dealer, 1946

  Alfred Stieglitz, Untitled, Camera Work, Nos. 49–50, 1917

The thing that impressed me then as now about New York was the sharp, and at the same time immense, contrast it showed between the dull and the shrewd, the strong and the weak, the rich and the poor, the wise and the ignorant… the strong, or those who ultimately dominated, were so very strong, and the weak so very, very weak - and so very, very many. (Theodore Dreiser)

John R. Grabach, The Fifth Year, 1934

 Raphael Soyer, Bowery Nocturne, 1933

 Lisette Model, Sammy’s, New York, 1940

 Martin Lewis, Late Traveller, c. 1930

  Weegee, Gunman Killed by Off-Duty Cop at 344 Broome Street, 1942

Late on the night of Feb. 2, Izzo and accomplices tried to hold up the Spring Arrow Social & Athletic Club, near Bowery. Shot by an off-duty cop, Izzo staggered toward Elizabeth and fell dead on his face, his gun skittering across the sidewalk.

 Dexter Dalwood Room 100, Chelsea Hotel, 1999
Room 100 at New York's Chelsea Hotel is the infamous site of the violent death of Nancy Spungen, allegedly at the hands of her boyfriend Sid Vicious.

 C.R.W. Nevinson, The Soul of the Soulless City (New York - an Abstraction), 1920

When it's three o' clock in New York, it's still 1938 in London - Bette Midler 

 Georgia O'Keeffe, The Radiator Building at Night, 1927

And New York is the most beautiful city in the world? It is not far from it. No urban night is like the night there ... Squares after squares of flame, set up and cut into the aether. Here is our poetry, for we have pulled down the stars to our will. (Ezra Pound)

Earle Horter, The Chrysler Building Under Construction, 1931

Sometimes, from beyond the skycrapers, the cry of a tugboat finds you in your insomnia, and you remember that this desert of iron and cement is an island. (Albert Camus)

Charles Sheeler, Windows, 1952

Skyscraper national park. (Kurt Vonnegut)

Harold Weston, Building the United Nations, 1950

 Alfred Stieglitz, Looking Northwest from the Shelton, 1932

Crammed on the narrow island the million-windowed buildings will jut glittering, pyramid on pyramid... (John Dos Passos)

 André Kertész, Lost Cloud, New York, 1937

Berenice Abbott, City Arabesque, 1936

And suddenly as I looked back at the skyscrapers of lower New York a queer fancy sprang into my head. They reminded me quite irresistibly of plied-up packing-cases outside a warehouse. I was amazed I had not seen the resemblance before. I could really have believed for a moment that that was what they were, and that presently out of these would come the real thing, palaces and noble places, free, high circumstances, and space and leisure, light and fine living for the sons of men. (H.G. Wells)

 André Kertesz, World Trade Center, 1972

 Hiroshi Sugimoto, World Trade Center, 1997

 Thomas Hoepker, View from Williamsburg, Brooklyn, to Manhattan, 11th September 2001

 Susan Meiselas, Liberty Plaza, New York, September 11, 2001

 Eberhard Havekost, Contact, 1998

 Ralston Crawford, Whitestone Bridge, 1930s

Over the great bridge, with sunlight through the girders making a constant flicker upon the moving cars, with the city rising up across the river in white heaps and sugar lumps all built with a wish out of non-olfactory money. (F. Scott Fitzgerald)

C. R. W. Nevinson, Looking through the Brooklyn Bridge, c. 1920

Eugene De Salignac,  Brooklyn Bridge Painters, 1914 

Arthur Tress, Flying Dream, Queens, NY, 1971

 Wouter Deruytter, Billboards, NY: 5th Avenue & 56th Street, 2005

I am just coming out of five years of night, and this orgy of violent lights gives me for the first time the impression of a new continent. An enormous, 50-foot high Camel billboard : a GI with his mouth wide open blows enormous puffs of real smoke. So much bad taste hardly seems imaginable. (Albert Camus)

Richard Estes, 42nd Street Crosstown Bus, 2004

 John Sloan, Backyards, Greenwich Village, 1914

 Cecil Chichester, Mid-Hudson Bridge, 1934

 Harry Shokler, Waterfront, Brooklyn, 1934

 George Ault, From Brooklyn Heights, 1925

Louis Guglielmi, Terror in Brooklyn, 1941

 Federal Crowd Control, 1918. Machine guns in front, modified phalanx. Soldiers on sides assigned to upstairs windows. Wilson feared antiwar riots, losing mind to small strokes.

 Paul Strand, Wall Street, New York, 1915

 N. Jay Jaffee, Bryant Park, New York, 1953

 Jerome Liebling, Butterfly Boy, New York City, 1949

 Charles Harbutt: Boys Smoking in Car, Reform School, New York, 1963

  Ted Croner: Taxi, New York Night, 1947/48

  Berenice Abbott, 42nd Street, 1938

When I had a look at the lights of Broadway by night, I said to my American friends : "What a glorious garden of wonders this would be, to any who was lucky enough to be unable to read." (G. K. Chesterton)

Reginald Marsh, Tattoo and Haircut, 1932

Edward Hopper, New York Movie, 1939

 George Bellows , Cliff Dwellers, 1913

 Paul Cadmus, Coney Island, 1935

 André Kertész, Fire Escape, New York, 1949

 Weegee, Simply Add Boiling Water, 1937

 Jindrich Styrsky, The Statue of Liberty, 1934

 Ellen Auerbach, Statue of Liberty, New York 1939

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