Forgotten Delights: The Producers

ISBN 13: 9780974589916

Forgotten Delights: The Producers

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9780974589916: Forgotten Delights: The Producers
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*Forgotten Delights: The Producers* is for all who enjoy the sight of a job done superlatively well. It’s a celebration of 19 explorers, inventors, engineers, businessmen and workers whose thoughts and efforts reshaped New York, the United States and the world. Among them are Giovanni da Verrazzano, Alexander von Humboldt, Peter Cooper, Samuel Finley Breese Morse, Dr. J. Marion Sims, Cornelius Vanderbilt, William Earl Dodge, John Ericsson, Alexander Lyman Holley, Samuel Rea, and *Double Check,* the bronze businessman poring over papers in his briefcase who became an impromptu memorial after 9/11.

Includes historical background on each figure, art analysis of the sculpture, sidebars with poetry and substantial quotations by or about the figure, plus maps and advice for a walking tour.

Available separately from the publisher:
CD-ROM with over 340 color images of the sculptures

Forthcoming volumes of the Forgotten Delights series include: Defenders - Politicians & Media Moguls - Artists - Allegories & Mythological Subjects - Children & Animals

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

About the Author:

Dianne Durante honed her skills in historical research at the University of Cincinnati (Ph.D. Classics, 1983) and in sixteen years as a bibliographic researcher for a Manhattan dealer in rare books. She is a lecturer on art and a freelance writer whose essays have been published in newspapers and on the Web. Currently she is working on the second volume in the Forgotten Delights series, and on a book on how to look at paintings.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

(From the Introduction)
THE SERIES FORGOTTEN DELIGHTS

Baggy overcoat, mutton-chop whiskers, puzzling object in one hand (could that be an artist's palette?): rushing by, I wonder what this old fuddy-duddy did to deserve an eight-foot-high bronze statue. I can’t figure it out from a quick glance, so I keep moving.

The next time I pass by, I notice a Parks Department plaque describing John Ericsson and the *Monitor.* "Esteemed Swedish-American engineer and inventor..." Sounds like an encyclopedia entry. Yawn. Next time I’ll keep walking again.

Months later, a crumbling Civil-War-era volume exhumed from the depths of New York Public Library provides details that finally grab my attention. Ericsson, a highly competent naval engineer, was often candid far beyond the point of tact. When Navy bureaucrats rejected his proposed ironclad for completely invalid reasons, he lectured them on its seaworthiness. Then: "His blood being well warmed by this time, he ended by declaring to the board with great earnestness: ‘Gentlemen, after what I have said, I consider it to be your duty to the country to give me an order to build the vessel before I leave this room.’"

Contract in hand, Ericsson returned to New York to supervise the building of the *Monitor,* a radically innovative type of naval vessel, at three different yards in New York, in a hundred days flat.

That’s a man worth stopping to look at. Not only did he share my attitude toward obstructive bureaucrats and wasted time, but he was brilliant enough to design a new type of vessel and efficient enough to supervise its construction in record time. These days when I walk by Ericsson’s statue, I give him a smile of admiration and comradeship.

Since I "met" *Ericsson,* I’ve researched many other outdoor sculptures. Now when I’m in Manhattan, I find myself surrounded by fascinating and delightful figures. They make me stop, look and think when I would have sworn my brain was too tired to function. They cheer me up when I’m tired or exasperated. The achievements and the virtues of the people these statues represent help supply the emotional fuel, the psychological energy, that keeps me going.

Forgotten Delights is a series of guidebooks to the sculptures of men, women, children and animals scattered throughout Manhattan, whom most people pass unseeingly and unthinkingly. Each volume in the series will cover a different group:

* Producers (explorers, inventors, engineers, businessmen)
* Defenders (soldiers, policemen, firemen)
* Politicians and Media Moguls (statesmen, politicians, lawyers, publishers, editors, journalists)
* Artists
* Allegorical and Mythological Figures
* Children; Animals

FORGOTTEN DELIGHTS: THE PRODUCERS

"Productive work," wrote Ayn Rand, "is the road of man’s unlimited achievement and calls upon the highest attributes of his character: his creative ability, his ambitiousness, his self-assertiveness, his refusal to bear uncontested disasters, his dedication to the goal of reshaping the earth in the image of his values." (For more of this passage, see Essay Number 18 on Johnson’s Taxi, 1983.)

*Forgotten Delights: The Producers* is a celebration of explorers, inventors, engineers, businessmen and workers whose thoughts and efforts reshaped New York, the United States and the world, making their lives and ours immeasurably better. Manhattan’s outdoor sculptures don’t include giants such as Edison, Bell, Carnegie or Ford. Yet the men who are represented are inspiring, both for their achievements and for reminding us that human progress can and should be not a rare occurrence but the norm.

The lives of most of the men discussed in *The Producers* have been chronicled in full-length, scholarly biographies. (See the references at the end of each essay.) Rather than summarizing such accounts, each essay in this book focuses on one of the subject's major achievements and its significance.

The essays are arranged by the dates of these major achievements, rather than by the dates at which the sculptures were cast or carved. Thus arranged, a look at nineteen pieces of sculpture gives a panoramic view of the growth of New York and America across the centuries.

Each of the nineteen essays includes:
* Title
* Artist
* Date of dedication
* Location, with notes on the best conditions for viewing
* "About the Statue": the sculpture as an artwork
* "About the Subject": a major achievement of the person represented, and its significance
* A sidebar with a lengthy quotation by, or related to, the subject of the sculpture
* Bibliography and recommendations for further reading
* Provenance: who paid for the sculpture and who owns it

At the end of the volume are a chronological list of sculptures by date of dedication, a brief annotated bibliography of sources on sculpture and New York, a subject index and (at the very end, for ease of reference) a list of the sculptures arranged for a walking tour.

A NOTE ON VISITING THE SCULPTURES

Because each of these sculptures is a three-dimensional object, one photograph—even several—cannot reveal all its details. To get the full impact, you must visit the sculpture.

The suggested walking tour at the end of the volume can be done in one long day, or broken down into several shorter trips. Take binoculars or a camera with a good telephoto lens, particularly for the *Columbus Monument* at Columbus Circle and the reliefs on the *Ericsson* at Battery Park.

Many sculptures are best observed at certain times of the day or year. On a very sunny day, for example, reflections make it difficult to see details on polished bronze. If a sculpture faces east, its front will fall into impenetrable shadow in the afternoon. If it’s set among trees, as many sculptures in Central Park are, the flickering shadows of the leaves often obscure details. I have noted such considerations for each sculpture. My own favorite viewing time is on an autumn day after the leaves have fallen, when the sky is slightly overcast. Bundle up.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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Book Description Forgotten Delights. Paperback. Condition: New. 180 pages. Dimensions: 8.5in. x 5.5in. x 0.4in.Forgotten Delights: The Producers is for all who enjoy the sight of a job done superlatively well. Its a celebration of 19 explorers, inventors, engineers, businessmen and workers whose thoughts and efforts reshaped New York, the United States and the world. Among them are Giovanni da Verrazzano, Alexander von Humboldt, Peter Cooper, Samuel Finley Breese Morse, Dr. J. Marion Sims, Cornelius Vanderbilt, William Earl Dodge, John Ericsson, Alexander Lyman Holley, Samuel Rea, and Double Check, the bronze businessman poring over papers in his briefcase who became an impromptu memorial after 911. Includes historical background on each figure, art analysis of the sculpture, sidebars with poetry and substantial quotations by or about the figure, plus maps and advice for a walking tour. Available separately from the publisher: CD-ROM with over 340 color images of the sculptures Forthcoming volumes of the Forgotten Delights series include: Defenders - Politicians and Media Moguls - Artists - Allegories and Mythological Subjects - Children and Animals This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Seller Inventory # 9780974589916

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