web page hit counter


Astoria / Long Island City

Sculptures and the Silver Screen

The neighborhood of Astoria, once known as Hallett’s Cove, gained it current name from John Jacob Astor, the then wealthiest man in America. (Interestingly, however, John himself never actually lived in Astoria.)
The area is also home to the quiet Socrates Sculpture Park at the intersection of Broadway and Vernon. It is considered an outdoor museum and stands atop a former landfill! Sculptor Mark di Suvero changed this in 1986; and today, the park contains many exhibitions as well as public events and workshops.
Fascinatingly enough, Astoria was one of the earliest sites for filmmaking in America. This part of its heritage is preserved today with the Museum of the Moving Image and nearby Kaufman Studios. The latter is one of the last true “Hollywood-style backlots” remaining in the country.
Nearby, Long Island City is the westernmost neighborhood in Queens and contains a high concentration of art galleries and studios. In the beginning, it was its own city but got annexed to the borough of Queens in 1898. Throughout the 20th century, a handful of tunnels and the Queensboro Bridge were built to connect L.I.C. to Manhattan, and the area began to gentrify.
Fun fact: One of the oldest bakeries here now operates as the largest film production facility in New York (Silvercup Studios)!
One of the many galleries located in LIC is the Noguchi Museum  which is named after famed the Japanese sculptor Isamu Noguchi. His work includes not only statues but stage/furniture design and sketches as well.
L.I.C. is also home to SculptureCenter, one of the few institutions to center only on sculpture development. It has been around since 1928 and is known for commissioning new works. Similarly, MoMa PS1 is one of the largest museums in the country dedicated only to contemporary artwork. As its name implies, it is affiliated with Manhattan’s Museum of Modern Art and attracts 150,000 patrons each year.
Long Island City is also home to the LIC Flea & Food Market. And with over 80 vendors selling unique foods and vintage pieces, you can never go wrong with stopping at LIC Flea & Food. Whatever the weather, this is a great place to check out!

Astoria / Long Island City

GETTING THERE

NYC Subway: IND Queens Boulevard Line (E, M, and R trains), BMT Astoria Line (N and W trains), NYC Bus

LOCALS LOVE

Noguchi Museum, Museum of the Moving Image, Kaufman Studios, MoMA PS1

.

Check Out Our Top Picks This Month

Check Out Our Top Picks This Month