James Gulliver Hancock (author); ALL THE BUILDINGS* IN NEW YORK; Universe (Nonfiction: Art) 19.95 ISBN: 9780789324672
Byline: Julie Eakin
Artist and illustrator James Gulliver Hancock's affection for New York City is evident in every line he's put to paper in composing All the Buildings* in New York *That I've Drawn So Far. The transplant from Sydney, Australia, introduces his collection -- a self-proclaimed obsession -- with the admission that he's been around the block in a few other places before, having also lived in London, Los Angeles, Vienna, Berlin, Paris, Montreal, and Indonesia.
And while he's also recorded aspects of those places, drawing such an iconic part of his new hometown has, he says, "become an almost ritualistic undertaking, a therapy of sorts, helping me to organize the overwhelming infinity and chaos of New York into something I can know and understand Now I find myself running into the buildings I've drawn and greeting them like old friends." Indeed, those with a New York affiliation will feel the same way looking at his art.
With a focus largely on Manhattan -- and split between the exteriors of landmark structures like Grand Central Terminal, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and The Plaza Hotel and some anonymous yet charming old brownstones -- Gulliver takes his readers on an architectural tour of the island, from Wall Street to Harlem, stopping to consider "all the windows, all the chimneys, all the pipes, and even all the spiderwebs between the pipes" of the buildings that attract him. Beyond Manhattan, the Brooklyn Bridge, Coney Island, and the New York Botanical Garden (in the Bronx) also get some ink. Each...