Money wins. Daniel Goldstein, the founder of Develop Don’t Destroy, has agreed to settle with Forest City Ratner, the developer of Atlantic Yards, for $3 million. He lives a few blocks from my studio on Pacific Street and was the last man standing in the footprint who hadn’t been bought out. The $3M apparently buys Goldstein’s condo, bought for $590K in 2003, and his silence--Goldstein agrees to “not actively oppose the project,” which primarily means to abandon the only coalition actively opposed to the project, DDD. Read more about this sad news here. Good news: Freddy’s, the great bar (and Ratner hate HQ) around the corner from my home, closes on April 30th, but will reopen on 4th and Union.
The photographer who took some of the most influential photographs of the 20th Century (and made the word Leica a household name) is having a giant posthumous retrospective at MOMA. This photo, taken in April of 1945, though less artful and more strictly photojournalistic, is one which has always resonated with me. Besides the explosive emotion, there’s a novel’s worth of content which can be extrapolated from the scene. For those of us who were schooled in the decisive moment street photography aesthetic, HCB is a god. His genius was not only in his timing, but in his distance. Asked once about what inspired him to trip the shutter when he did, he said, I’m paraphrasing, “La géometrie.” True, but like Bach who pretended that all his compositions were nothing more than mathematical variations, form is clearly married to passion throughout HCB’s work. What makes the show, which opens Sunday, a real treat is that many never before seen photos will be on view, some of which are included on the HCB, The Modern Century’s web preview.
While on a long walk this afternoon, I approached this statue of Grant on horseback and met Charlie Brown, 65, a very charming and happy man who talked my ear off about his life in apartment 3B across Bedford Ave.
This amorous couple actually shouted at me to come take their picture. A rare event. Of course I complied.
Sisters on the waterfront enjoying the view from Brooklyn Bridge Parks’ Pier 1.
In mid-March, Bloomberg et al commemorated the first part of the Brooklyn Heights new park known as Brooklyn Bridge Park. Formerly a bunch of abanoned docks and warehouses, this land that borders the last part of the East River is now verdant and hiply designed. The first part, Pier 1, is open to the public. Other adjacent piers are being converted and should be open by summer. Read more about the plans here.
The above photo was released by Russian news agencies. It is said to be a portrait of one of the Moscow suicide bombers (Dzhennet Abdurakhmanova, likely not yet 17) and her husband, Umalat Magomedov, a “militant Islamist,” who was killed in 2009. A big novel could be written about this photograph. The youth, the cocky pride, the Bonnie and Clyde coolness--and all the blood of innocent victims on their hands in the name of vengeance and political oppression. While it seems the condemnation is universal, the West still refuses to face the difficult question: why would a young woman barely on the brink of adulthood willingly destroy herself and dozens of innocent strangers?
You’re looking at the future site of the Brooklyn Nets stadium. In 2011 with lots of traffic. Below is a closer view, with the building in the top right containing the home of Daniel Goldstein, the founder of Develop Don’t Destroy. Most likely all buildings around here will be razed first before the eminent domain showdown for Goldstein’s property and a few other holdouts who refused to be bought out by Ratner’s deep pockets.