Category:Buildings in New York City

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New York City, NY

Featured Building: Master

A sunny day

The Master wouldn't exist without Russian philosopher Nicholas Roerich. Born 1874 in Russia, Roerich quickly gained world-wide acclaim as a thinker, a writer, and a painter. In 1918, when Lenin and the Bolshevik Party took power in Russia, Roerich, an outspoken critic of Lenin, left for Finland, then London.

An exhibit of Roerich's work at the Chicago Art Institute solidified the artist's fame in the United States, and he and his wife moved to and lived in New York throughout the early 1920s. During that time, Roerich maintained a pen pal relationship with H.G. Wells, became friends with famous soprano Mary Garden, and founded institutions throughout the States that aimed to bring artists together in civic activism.[1]

A large percentage of the painter's extraordinary output -- Roerich had produced over 3,000 paintings by 1928 -- was housed in a mansion at 310 Riverside Drive, and overseen by Louis Horch, who financially backed much of Roerich's work.[2]

In 1928, the mansion was torn down. Far from being the end of the Roerich Museum, however, this was an expansion, as Harvey Wiley Corbett designed the massive skyscraper specifically as the new home of the Roerich Museum. The bottom three floors of the building were solely for the museum, and contained exhibition halls, conference rooms, galleries, and other areas specifically for the exhibition and discussion of Roerich's work. Roerich himself maintained an apartment in the building, but spent most of his time in India seeking spiritual wisdom.

In October 1929, the Master Apartments opened, and the stock market crashed. Horch was able to keep possession of the building, but his once-devoted relationship with Roerich grew strained, and in 1938 he converted the one-artist museum into a museum dedicated to modern art and sculpture, which he named the Riverside Museum. Roerich passed away in 1947. Horch owned the building as late as 1971, until it was sold and used as traditional rental housing.

The building was converted to a cooperative in 1988.


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Staff Picks:

Ansonia - A former hotel with a long and storied history of famous residents, scandals, and tumultuous times, the Ansonia is known for its distinctive architecture and lavish design detailing.

City Spire - At the time of its construction, City Spire was the world's second tallest concrete building, and today is known for its record setting three floor penthouse with panoramic views of Manhattan.

Apple Bank Building - A landmark building that once housed the Central Savings Bank, the Apple Bank Building is known for its luxury, including a fitness center that is illuminated by a chandelier.

Downtown By Starck - A conversion project by famed architect Philippe Starck, this building has been dubbed the Downtown Insanity Palace due to its numerous over the top luxury amenities.

Rutherford Place - A former maternity hospital, Rutherford Place is now a condominium residence in Gramercy Park, and a classic example of the Beaux Arts architectural style.

Jade- With interior design by Jade Jagger, this building introduced Manhattan-ites to pod style living.

Centurion - A collaboration between world renowned architect I.M. Pei and his son, the Centurion lured Pei out of his semi-retirement to create this Modernist classic.

Atrium - 1896 hostel for poor men becomes modern luxury Condo over 100 years later

London Terrace Towers - "South Italian Style" full block residence with an astonishing 1663 apartments

PS90 - Everything becomes a Condo ... eventually. A public school converted to a Condo in New York

One Brooklyn Bridge Park - All the amenities of Manhattan just across the East River ... with the view of Manhattan included

303 East 33rd Street - A cutting edge "green" condominium for the modern environmentally friendly resident in New York City

Kalahari Harlem - LEED Gold Certified building that took design inspirations from several tribal groups in Africa

25 Minetta Lane - An Art-Deco, pre-war building constructed of red brick in an "H" plan design completed in the spring of 1940

Dakota - The infamous former residence of John Lennon on Central Park West.


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