Tag: Walking New York City Museums

The American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog              101 Park Avenue                  New York, NY 10178

The American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog 101 Park Avenue New York, NY 10178

The American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog

101 Park Avenue

New York, NY 10178

(212) 696-8360

https://museumofthedog.org/

https://www.facebook.com/akcmuseumofthedog/

Open: Sunday 10:00am-5:00pm/Monday-Thursday Closed/Friday-Saturday 10:00am-5:00pm

Fee: Adults $15.00/Seniors (65+), Students (13-24) & Active Military/Veterans $10.00/Children under 12 $5.00/Members Free

My review on TripAdvisor:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g60763-d15941897-Reviews-The_American_Kennel_Club_Museum_of_the_Dog-New_York_City_New_York.html?m=19905

The American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog at 101 Park Avenue

When I was walking the neighborhood of Murray Hill for my blog, “MywalkinManhattan.com, I came across on one of the side streets tucked into a new office building on Park Avenue, The American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog at 101 Park Avenue. This unique little museum is two floors of art dedicated to the story of the dog.

The first floor features small fossils that show the early domestication of dogs during prehistoric times with humans. They may have used them for hunting and companionship. You could see this in the burials and in the wall paintings found all over the world that they partnered with early man and helped shape their world.

The American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog collection

Most of the paintings were from the Victorian Age (post Civil War to WWI) where the romanticized view of nature and of pet companions was emphasized. One both the first and second floor there were all sorts of paintings of various breeds of dog in all sorts of playful and working environments. There were dogs for hunting and sport, dogs as pets and dogs in playful position reacting with their masters and each other.

The Victorian approach to pets

The was also porcelain figurines of dogs, statuary and trophies from various Canine Clubs all over the country. It shows the history of the dog as show with breeding and disposition counting of the way the animal was raised and trained.

The second floor had another series of paintings, a lot from the same time period and some contemporary artist’s take on modern dog owners and their relationship with their pets.

Canine Porcelains line the staircase

Also on the second floor was exhibition on ‘Presidential Dogs”, with the first families relationship with their dogs (and cats too) and the role that they played in White House politics. Truthfully outside of “Socks”, the Clinton’s cat, I never knew of any of the White House pets. I knew the both the Roosevelts and Kennedy’s had lots of pets in the White House, I never heard of their names or seen their pictures. So that was an eye opener.

White House pets tell their own story

Also in a special case was small fancy dog houses and dog holders for travel which was interesting to see how small dogs could travel with their masters and the expense to create a way for them to travel. These were very elaborate. I thought of some of the items I used to see at Bergdorf-Goodman when I worked there with the Ralph Lauren tote bags and fur lined sweaters and thinking this was a little much.

The museum also has a small gift shop on the first floor near the entrance that you should check out. There is all sorts of books and art work to look through and knick-knacks to buy with a dog them. The staff is also very nice and very welcoming.

The entrance to the museum and gift shop has a nice contemporary feel to it

History of the American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog:

The American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog preserves, interprets and celebrates the role of the dogs in society and educates the public about the human-canine bond through its collection of art and exhibits that inspire engagement with dogs.

The Museum logo

Founded in 1982, the AKC Museum of the Dog was originally located in the New York Life Building at 51 Madison Avenue as a part of the AKC headquarters. In 1987, the Museum of the Dog was moved to a new location in Queeny Park, West St. Louis County, Missouri. After over 30 great years at Queeny Park, the decision was made to bring the Museum back to its original home and reunite it with the AKC headquarters and collection.

Combining fine art with high-tech interpretive displays, the Museum of the Dog’s new home at 101 Park Avenue hopes to capture the hearts and minds of visitors. Located in the iconic Kalikow Building, the Museum will offer rotating exhibits featuring objects from its 1,700 piece collection and 4,000 volume library.

We hope to see you soon.

(From the AKC Museum of Dog website)

Japan Society    333 East 47th New York, NY 10017

Japan Society 333 East 47th New York, NY 10017

Japan Society

333 East 47th Street

New York, NY  10017

(212)  832-1155

https://www.japansociety.org/

Open: Monday-Friday 10:00am-6:00pm/Saturday & Sunday Closed

Fee: Depends on the event; See the website

 

I recently visited the Japan Society for the ‘Japan Cuts’ film festival 2019 to see four films as part of the festival. I had visited the Society years ago for a ‘Monsters’ exhibition which coincided with the dropping of the Atom Bomb. It was told to me during the tour of the exhibition that the Godzilla movies were the Japanese reaction to the dropping of the bombs and the effects of nuclear was on nature.

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The inside lobby  of the Japan Society

This time around it was a little more upbeat. I went to see new films by Japanese directors who are looking at contemporary culture a little more differently that film makers of the past. I was most impressed with “Dance with Me”, a light weight musical that reminded me of 1960’s musicals that came out in the United States and “Whole” about Japanese who come from mixed backgrounds and their role in society. It was nice to sit back and watch the films and participate in the Q & A’s.

Japan Society Film Festival

My favorite scene from “Dance with Me” “Happy Valley”

 

It was also nice to walk around the building to see the indoor gardens and pools that are located in the lobby area of the building. The building does have a feeling of Ying and Yang. There will be more exhibitions in the Fall.

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The inside of the lobby of the Japan Society

 

 

The opening film “Dance with Me”

 

The Q & A at Japan Cuts for “Dance with Me”:

 

I recently visited the Japan Society for the “Made in Tokyo” exhibition on the development of architecture in the City of Tokyo between the 1962 and the 2020 Olympic Games. The exhibition showed the development and progress of the City since the bombings in WWII and how the City has rethought  the building and rebuilding of the City since.

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“Made in Tokyo”

Just like in the United States old department stores and office buildings are finding new use and older buildings in fringe and outside rural areas are becoming tech hubs. It was interesting so see how they were reworking old turn of the last century buildings and homes as incubators for the ‘computer age’.

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The “Made in Japan” exhibition is closing at the Japan Society on January 26th, 2020. If you like the history of architecture this is an exhibition not to be missed.

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The “Made in Tokyo” exhibition at the Japan Society

 

The Japan Society mission:

The Japan Society is a non-profit organization formed in 1907 to promote friendly relations between the United States and Japan. Its headquarters, the youngest landmark building in New York was designed by Junzo Yoshimura and opened in 1971 at 333 East 47th Street near the United Nations. With a focus on promoting “arts and culture, public policy, business, language and education,” the organization has regularly held events in its many facilities including a library, art gallery and theater since its opening. After suspending all activities during World War II, Japan Society expanded under the leadership of John D. Rockefeller III (Wiki).

History:

In 1907, Tamemoto Kuroki and Goro Ijuin were chosen to represent Japan at the Jamestown Exposition. They attended a welcome dinner in New York with Japanese ambassador to the United States, Shuzo Aoki, where there was talk of forming an organization to promote US-Japan relations in the city. Two days later at a luncheon held by Kuroki, Japan Society was born. The organization would be run by Aoki, then Honorary President of the Japan Society of the UK and John Huston Findley.

Japan Society spent the next forty years hosting events in honor of Japanese royalty, giving annual lectures on a wide range of topics and presenting art exhibits that drew in thousands of New Yorkers. In 1911, Lindsay Russell, another founding member of the society and later president, met with Emperor Meiji and spent his visit to Japan encouraging more societies to form there and throughout the United States.

Japan Society was soon incorporated under New York law and finally found a home near one of Russell’s work offices, though it continued to relocate throughout its history before its current headquarters was opened in 1971. At this time, Japan Society and its members began to express interest in improving teaching about Japan in the United States. The organization began sponsoring trips to the country, publishing books and sent a report to the Department of Education about the portrayal of Japan in American textbooks.

It remained active during World War I, operating as it had for the last seven years but the organization became more political when it began associating with the Anti-Alien Legislative Committee, an advocacy group that spoke out against yellow peril. Russell and Hamilton Holt, another founding member used the organization’s publication to defend all of Japan’s actions at the time. Unbeknownst to anyone at the time, even one of Japan Society’s writers secretly worked for the Japanese government with the task of improving Japan’s imagine in the United States. The organization eventually realized the dangers of taking sides and by 1924 stopped publishing any political commentary.

By the 1930’s, membership had dropped significantly due to financial difficulties and the Second Sino-Japanese War. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, Henry Waters Taft immediately resigned as president after serving  from 1922 to 1929 and again from 1934. Russell also stepped down as one of Japan Society’s directors. All activities were suspended and would not resume until the Treaty of San Francisco was signed in 1951.

John D. Rockefeller III served as president from 1952 to 1969 and then as Chairman of the Board until his death in 1978.  He accompanied John Foster Dulles on his trip to Japan that eventually led to the signing of the 1951 treaty. Rockefeller, a supporter of the Institute of Pacific Relations, who visited Japan in 1929 during one of its conferences, wanted to contribute to bettering US-Japan relations after the war and believed there needed to be non-governmental organizations like Japan Society in each country in order for such friendly relations to exist.

Under Rockefeller’s leadership, Japan Society expanded and talk began to find a permanent headquarters for it. It shared offices with another Rockefeller-led organization, Asia Society but as the two organizations continued to grow during the 1960’s,  it became increasingly clear that Japan Society needed its own building. After receiving donations from Rockefeller and other members, construction began on “Japan House” in 1967. Designed by Junzo Yoshimura, whose work also includes Asia Society’s headquarter, it became the first building in New York of contemporary Japanese architecture. On September 13, 1971, it was finally opened to the public after a ceremony attended by Prince Hitachi. He echoed Russell’s first words about Japan Society, calling for “closer people-to-people” contact between countries.

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Japan Society building

(This information was taken from Wiki and I give them full credit for the information. I also included information of Japan Society).

American Folk Art Museum 2 Lincoln Square (Columbus Avenue between 65th and 66th Streets) New York, NY 10023

American Folk Art Museum 2 Lincoln Square (Columbus Avenue between 65th and 66th Streets) New York, NY 10023

American Folk Art Museum

2 Lincoln Square (Columbus Avenue between 65th and 66th Streets)

New York, NY 10023

(212) 595-9533

https://folkartmuseum.org/

Open: Sunday 12:00pm-6:00pm/Monday Closed/Tuesday-Thursday 11:30am-7:30pm/Friday 12:00pm-7:30pm/Saturday 11:30am-7:30pm

My review on TripAdvisor:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g60763-d266582-Reviews-American_Folk_Art_Museum-New_York_City_New_York.html?m=19905

I recently visited the American Folk Art Museum in New York City for the “Made in New York City” exhibition and it is a very interesting and engaging museum. The artwork for the museum was a combination of painting, sculpture, pottery and metal work created at different periods of the City’s history. It really showed the extent of manufacturing in New York City and the craftsmanship that was once here.

American Folk Art Museum Made in New York II

The paintings of Colonial New York

Some of the interesting things you will see are the paintings by artists in both Colonial New York and from the Hudson River School of prominent New Yorkers through its first 200 years of history. You will see how the styles of art have changed over the years.

Also there is a lot of metal work in the ways of signs and rods for the front of doors and for the roofs. The woodwork carvings that once graced the front doors of merchants all over the City is now a lost art. Here you could see the works of German and Russian carvers and the craftsmanship that was put into every piece. It was interesting too to see the racial themes and stereotypes that were used in the art.

American Folk Art Museum Made in New York

Wood Carvings and Metal work in the “Made in New York City” exhibition

Another program that the museum does well is they have afternoon Jazz Wednesdays and Free Concerts on Friday nights. There are family programs, walking tours, curator talks and lectures as part of the museum programming so there is something for everyone.

The American Folk Art Mission:

Since 1961, the American Folk Art Museum has been shaping the understanding of art by the self-taught through its exhibitions, publications and educational programs. As a center of scholarship and by showcasing the creativity of individuals whose singular talents have been refined through experience rather than formal artistic training, the museum considers the historical, social and artistic context of American culture. Its collection includes more than seven thousand artworks dating from the eighteenth century to the present, from compelling portraits and dazzling quilts to powerful works by living self-taught artists in a variety of mediums (Museum bio).

Self-Taught art, past and present, tells empowering stories of everyday life. The field of American folk art was first defined at the turn of the twentieth century by collectors, professional artists, critics, dealers and curators whose search for an authentic American Art seemed to be finally answered in works that presented a nuanced  of national identity, faith, progress, ingenuity, community and individuality. Under the umbrella of “folk art” expanded to also include artists working in the present. For the last twenty years, the term self-taught has more regularly come to address these artists, whose inspiration emerges from unsuspected paths and unconventional places, giving voice to individuals who may be situated outside the social mainstream. Those individuals have been active participants in the shaping of American visual culture, influencing generations  of artists and establishing lively artistic traditions (Museum History).

American Folk Art Museum History:

The museum of Early American Folk Arts as it was known initially held its first exhibition in a rented space on 49 West 53rd Street in 1961. The museum’s collection was launched in 1962 with the gift of a gate in the form of an American flag, celebrating the nation’s centennial. The gift reflected the museum’s early focus on eighteenth and nineteenth century vernacular arts from the northeast America.

In 1966, after receiving a permanent charter, the museum expanded its name and mission. As the Museum of American Folk Arts, it looked beyond the traditional definitions of American folk art. Its exhibitions and collection began to reflect “every aspect of the folk arts in America-north, south, east and west.” Founding curator Herbert W. Hemphill Jr. “expanded the notion of folk art beyond traditional, utilitarian and communal expressions.” Under his direction, the museum began to champion idiosyncratic and individualistic artwork from the fields of traditional and contemporary folk art. In doing so, the museum ushered in a new era in the field of twentieth-century folk art (Museum History).

The 1990’s brought new focus to the diversity and multiculturalism of American Folk Art. Offering a more inclusive vision. the museum began to present African American and Latino artworks in their exhibitions and permanent collections. Director Gerard C. Wertikin announced American folk art’s common heritage as “promoting an appreciation of diversity in a way that does not foster ethnic chauvinism or racial division.” (Museum History).

The museum further established  its broadened outlook with the 1998 formation of the Contemporary  Center, a division of the museum devoted to the work of 20th and 21st century self-taught artists as well as non-American artworks in the tradition of European art brut. In 2001, the museum opened the Henry Darger Center to house 24 self-taught artist’s works as well as a collection of his books, tracings, drawing and source materials (Museum History).

American Folk Art Museum

The new home of the American Folk Art Museum

In 2001, the museum chose its current name, American Folk Art Museum. Recognizing that American Fold Art could be fully understood in an international context, the word American functions as an indication of the museum’s location, emphasis and principal patronage rather than as a limitation on  the kind of art it collects, interprets or presents. The museum’s current programming reflects this shift in focus. Past exhibits have included folk arts of Latin America, England, Norway, among other countries and continents (Museum history).

Don’t miss this amazing little museum on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

 

 

 

The Hamilton Grange National Memorial 414 West 141st Street                                  New York, NY 10031

The Hamilton Grange National Memorial 414 West 141st Street New York, NY 10031

The Hamilton Grange

414 West 141st Street

New York, NY  10031

(646) 548-2310

http://www.nps.gov/hagr

Hours: Wednesday-Sunday-9:00am-5:00pm/Closed Monday-Tuesday

Fee: Donation

TripAdvisor Review:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g60763-d105813-Reviews-Hamilton_Grange_National_Memorial-New_York_City_New_York.html?m=19905

Alexander Hamilton’s Summer Home

In the late 1700’s, well-to-do dwellers moved to Harlem Heights in the summer, seeking its cool breezes. They also wanted to avoid yellow fever, a summer threat in lower Manhattan, Hamilton and his wife, Elizabeth  (of the influential Schuyler family) often visited friends here and decided to build their own retreat.

In 1802, they moved in and Hamilton began commuting to his downtown law office, a 90 minute carriage trip. He and Elizabeth also began to entertain friends, colleagues and leader in their elegant home and gardens. Little did Hamilton know that his time at The Grange would be brief.

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Hamilton Grange home

Witness to Slavery:

Alexander Hamilton (1755-1804) grew up on Nevis and St. Croix, islands in the Caribbean, where thousands of enslaved Africans labored in sugar cane fields. As a clerk for a shipping company, young Hamilton worked directly with ship captains bringing in their human cargo. This experience haunted him and lead to his lifelong opposition to slavery.

Saved by a Hurricane:

Hamilton’s mother, Rachel, raised him and his brother along. A shop owner, she died of yellow fever when Hamilton was in his early teens. That’s when he started working at the shipping company. He impressed his boss with his energy, ambition and intelligence. Then the local newspaper published his letter describing a devastating hurricane. Townspeople were so taken by his writing that hey helped pay his way to America to further his education. In the letter, he wrote: …’the ear-piercing shrieks of the distressed were sufficient to strike astonishment into Angels’.

In America:

Hamilton plunged into American life. He enrolled in King’s College (now Colombia University) in New York. He wrote passionately about the revolutionary ideas of American rebels. When the fighting began, young Hamilton joined them. By the time he married at 25, he was a published writer, seasoned military leader and a close friend of George Washington.

Alexander Hamilton.jpg

Alexander Hamilton

Family Man:

Hamilton and Elizabeth loved children. They had eight of their own and took in others. Hamilton’s work as a lawyer helped pay bills while he served the county with little if nay pay.

The Duel:

After years of differences, Aaron Burr challenged Hamilton to a duel in 1804. Burr, now the country’s vice-president, felt he had to defend his honor. Friends tried to soothe both men but failed. Facing possible death, Hamilton wrote letters to his friends and family. After he died from Burr’s bullet, Elizabeth read his letter and these final words: ‘Adieu, best of wives and best of women. Embrace all my darling children for me’.

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Rooms at the Hamilton Grange have period furniture

Elizabeth Carries On:

Family friends made sure Elizabeth had enough money to live with her children at The Grange. She preserved Hamilton’s thousands of letters, essays and other writings. She also started an orphanage and was its director into her 80’s. At age 91, she went to live with a daughter in Washington DC. She charmed presidents and other dignitaries until she died in 1854 at age 97.

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Elizabeth Schuyler

Alexander Hamilton: Soldier, Founder and Philosopher:

Revolutionary War Days:

By age 21, Alexander Hamilton identified  himself with the revolutionary cause. He organized an artillery unit that defended New York City and fought in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. George Washington noticed Hamilton’s daring and intelligence and appointed him as a personal aide.

Hamilton’s new job required him to be writer, diplomat and advisor to Washington. Even so, Hamilton ached to return to battle. Eventually, Washington appointed him Colonel of an infantry brigade. Hamilton led a major attack in the battle of Yorktown in 1781.

Bold Ideas for New Times:

As a lawyer after the war, Hamilton defended New York citizens who had been loyal to Britain. He argued the new treaties and laws protecting all citizens and that loyalists would help rebuild the city. He also led the New York Manumission Society, which protected and educated free and enslaved African-Americans.

At the 1787 Constitution Convention, Hamilton argued for a strong central government. With James Madison and John Jay, he wrote essays explaining the new Constitution and urging citizens to vote for its ratification. Politicians and judges still consult “The Federalist Papers” about the meaning of the US Constitution.

In the New Government:

As first Secretary of the Treasury, Hamilton recommended the federal government pay off states debts, tax imported goods, establish a national bank and promote manufacturing. His ideas worried Sectary of State Thomas Jefferson, who believed the federal government did not have powers. Hamilton argued the Constitution supported flexible ‘implied powers.’ Congress and the Supreme Court agreed. By the end of Hamilton’s term, the country had excellent credit and a strong economy.

A Controversial Citizen:

Hamilton resumed his law practice in 1795 after leaving federal service. His clients included free and enslaved African-Americans whom he helped for no pay. He also defended a newspaper editor sued for slander by Thomas Jefferson. Hamilton argued journalists had the same rights as citizens to freedom of speech. His victory strengthened United States citizens’ First Amendment rights.

Hamilton often criticized President Jefferson’s government and his vice-president, Aaron Burr. His harsh words about Burr lead to the duel that ended Hamilton’s life. Alexander Hamilton’s short and controversial life left the United States poised to become a powerful nation something he dreamed of but did not see.

Visiting the site:

Planning your visit:

Hamilton Grange is on West 141st Street between Convent and St. Nicholas Avenues, its third location. In 1889, the city began building new streets across the estate. A church bought The Grange and moved it to safety two blocks away. In 2008, the National Park Service moved it to its current location, still on the original estate.

Hamilton Grange is open year-round, 9:00am to 5:00pm, Wednesday through Sunday except Thanksgiving and Christmas. Exhibits and a film highlight Hamilton’s major achievements. Guided tours are first-come, first-serve and limited to 15 visitors. Enjoy quiet activities on the grounds.

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Hamilton Grange Display

We strive to make our facilities, services and programs accessible to all. Call or visit our website.

Hamilton Grange is near bus routes and subway stations; see maps at right. Visit http://www.mta.info for routes and schedules. All applicable federal, state and city laws and regulations apply here.

Hamilton Grange National Memorial is one of over 390 parks in the National Park System. To learn more about national parks, visit http://www.rips.gov.

*This information was taken off the pamphlet available at the site put out by the National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior: National Memorial New York and I give them full credit for the information.

*Bloggers Note: Because of the Musical on Broadway presently, the site has gotten very busy during the summer months but don’t let that deter you from visiting. The house and the tour are very interesting.

I mentioned this on my blog “MywalkinManhattan” when visiting this part of Harlem. There are a lot of nice restaurants close by and the SUNY campus is right there to relax in. The neighborhood is save but still you have to watch yourself anytime you walk around NYC.