1001 Fifth Avenue

A postmodern design by Johnson & Burgee, 1001 Fifth Avenue was widely criticized when completed in 1979 for its “billboard” façade and “sliced-off Tootsie Roll” fenestration (the latter crack coming from The New York Times’ architecture critic Ada Louise Huxtable).  As a forerunner of the later and more celebrated AT&T Building by the same firm,… Continue reading

985 Fifth Avenue

Often mistaken for a wing of 980 Fifth Avenue, 985 Fifth Avenue shares its more controversial neighbor’s setback but seems more deserving of the “excruciatingly banal” epithet. The unusual sculpture in front (pictured above) is by Priscilla Kapel and is titled “The Castle”. The work might be intended as an ironic take on the Gothic… Continue reading

910 Fifth Avenue

Once a 12 story Beaux-Arts building similar is style to 907 Fifth Avenue directly across 72nd Street, 910 Fifth Avenue was stripped to its steel skeleton in 1959 and rebuilt as a 16-story white brick apartment house in the then generic “white brick” style. Writing of 910 Fifth Avenue, historian Andrew Alpern opined that “its… Continue reading

800 Fifth Avenue

800 Fifth Avenue is a dreary slab. A heavy-handed rear garden may provide some pleasure to the inhabitants but contributes nothing at the street level; the Central Park façade is worse.

1 East 57th Street

1 East 57th Street is a 15-story building by Cross & Cross much-altered by a grotesque store, now thankfully gone, that featured a mannequin of – no, really – Superman pushing a partially exterior elevator up and down the façade.  What remains retains some residual idea of the classical style of the 1930 design –… Continue reading