New York Daily Photo Analytics

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Astor Place Cube

Certainly one of the most prominent landmarks in Manhattan, the 15 foot cube at Astor Place has been a fixture since 1967 - designed by Tony Rosenthal from Cor-Ten steel and officially named "Alamo". It goes by many popular names and most commonly is just known as "the cube." The all-black sculpture sits at a crossroads between the East and West Village at a major intersection: 4th Avenue, St Marks Place, 8th Street, Lafayette Street, around which we find Cooper Union (background in the photo), theaters, the new Gwathmey building and the Astor Place subway station. Its most distinguishing feature is its ability to be rotated, a source of endless fascination for passersby. The Cube's prominent location and unique appearance has made it a planned and unplanned meeting place since it was installed. It became a major hangout for punks, students, skateboarders etc. Its removal for repairs in March of 2005 was subject to many rumors and concerns. However, all were relieved when in November, 2005, the Cube was finally returned (NYC Parks press release here). Here is a final article with many details on this enduring and fascinating NYC icon.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'd be scared to sit beneath it if it can be rotated. The illusion that it can fall over is too great. All that said, I think it's a great picture.

Chris

luggi said...

Lovely post.

Brian said...

Thanks - the cube is one of my favorite icons - I'm thankful it has been restored. It was in very bad shape.
Brian

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