Cast Iron

Updated Ridiculousness

Tim Michiels was kind enough to point out that the building I discussed with cast-iron sperm-candle columns is landmarked, and therefore should be reused at some point. Good news. On the other hand, the building has been in its current state since at least 2013, when the picture on its Wikipedia page was taken, which …

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The Original Ridiculousness

In June, I discussed the “sperm candle column” both as an architectural element and as one of the most ridiculous names in the field. As I mentioned then, the very tall, spindly columns that mark this style originated in cast-iron facades and made their way back to masonry facades like the examples I showed then. …

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Beautiful and Seemingly Out of Place

The Lower East Side can surprise you. Portions of it were once industrial, but there’s not much left as physical reminders of that fact. But there, on First Avenue, is a perfectly-preserved neo-grec cast-iron front loft building. It looks like it somehow drifted over from the cast iron district in SoHo, about a mile and …

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Adding Some Utilitas to the Venustas

The pictures above and below were taken on Astor Place. They are parts of the street facade of a loft building constructed for industry in the 1870s and long since converted to other uses. The vast majority of nineteenth-century American “classical” architecture isn’t. That’s not a critique, just recognition of the fact that the classical …

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