The Good Old Brooklyn Bridge…

Brooklyn

Marina Chetner

… sang Frank Sinatra in the 1940’s black & white film, It Happened in BrooklynThe Brooklyn Bridge  is such a beautiful song.

If someone asked you to name New York’s top three iconic landmarks, I am sure that the Brooklyn Bridge would make the cut. It’s inspired so many films, poems, stories, and life moments.

From this architecturally stunning structure, an open-air viewing deck grant visitors unobstructed New York views, unlike those seen from the Williamsburg and Manhattan Bridges. (NB: The Bridge is undergoing renovation at this time so there is scaffolding on part of the way from Brooklyn towards its centre).

On the Brooklyn Bridge, everyone shares the same path, which means mayhem. Although a dividing line maintains some order, it doesn’t succeed given the throngs of tourists descend on the bridge daily. Walkers brush shoulders as the stroll from Manhattan to Brooklyn, or vive…

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New York ~ Cloaked in Snow

See New York

Marina Chetner

I haven’t acclimated to the Northern Hempishere’s winters, but I was excited to experience the 2012’s first snowfall and see New York shine under snow. Don’t get me wrong, winter has blessed me with her presence here many times before — last year’s heavy storm left a lasting impression on me; I haven’t relocated back to warmer shores yet (as I vowed to do so at the time) — but I do miss New York’s snow-fringed beauty.

Here’s how the weekend unfolded…

SATURDAY

Drinking hot chocolate and watching movies all day would have been idyllic, but I decided to make the most of the 3+ inch snowfall and headed to Manhattan’s West Village. With the Christmas festivities over and holiday lights now taken down, the neighborhood’s streetscapes were still as pretty as ever, with window sills framed by snow, street lights sprinkled with a light dusting of flakes, sidewalks caked…

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The Guggenheim Museum: in ‘All’ its glory

Marina Chetner

It’s hard to stand out in New York And if you do, you’ll usually have something exceptional to show for it. Such is the case with the city’s architecture; such is the case with its art.

The Guggenheim Museum has been around for over half a century. A celebrated institution, the building is an artwork unto itself, subjected to a fair amount of controversy. Some say that Frank Lloyd Wright ‘designed his building as an asymmetric nose-thumbing at the rigid order of New York’s streets and architecture’[1]; others believe that he was an architect ahead of his time.

“Mr. Wright’s greatest building, New York’s greatest building.” said Architect Philip Johnson, “one of the greatest rooms of the 20th century.”[2]

A contested expansion in 1992 (a rectangular annex was added to the museum’s backdrop) provoked further outrage and debate. Woody Allen likened its new look to a “giant…

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Happy Holidays! xoxo New York City

Marina Chetner

The Norway spruce that decorates Rockefeller Center this year is 74-foot tall; it is decorated in 30,000 colored lights and topped with a Swarovski star. Though the Rockefeller Christmas tree looks similar from year to year, give or take a few feet in height, each tree to have graced the plaza has told a different story of its origin. The 2011 tree was not selected per the usual application process, as it was scouted by the Rockefeller Center’s head gardener on a property in Mifflinville, PA whilst driving along the I-80 freeway. The tree now stands proudly in the middle of Manhattan, admired not only by its owners (albeit in a different light) but also by throngs of visitors at any one time. This is just one example of the preparation and energy that goes into the creating the Christmas  experience in Manhattan.

Manhattan is one of the best…

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Bolt of Inspiration Series, Part Six (Rain)… and Thank You to…

Marina Chetner

Recently I came across a quote by Paulo Coehlo that r motivated me to curate part six of the Bolt of Inspiration Series.

I’d also like to dedicate this post to fellow bloggers, My thoughts, pics and personal opinions and thoughts and rainstorms. Both nominated me for the Versatile Blogger Award – thank you! These two wonderful blogs make me smile, laugh and inspire with their words and insights. As I recently posted on receiving The Versatile Blogger Award from Victor Ho, I thought I’d spread the love by sharing a selection of inspiring quotes and images – many of the photographs taken by very talented and well traveled photographers in the blogosphere. I hope you check out all of these blog links!

Enjoy!

“If we only walk on sunny days, we’ll never reach our destination.” Paulo Coehlo

“Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we…

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Williamsburg Bridge: Art on Art

Marina Chetner

It inspired Depeche Mode’s video and album art (respectively, Policy of Truth and World in My Eyes); appeared in the James Bond film, Live and Let Die; and more recently, in July 2011, set the stage for an aerialist who performed on it (illegally). I’m talking about the Williamsburg bridge, New York’s only suspension bridge that has been standing for over 100 years.

I recently discovered the beauty (and benefit) of the bridge after walking across it, from Williamsburg to the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Why hadn’t I discovered the bridge’s walkway before? I thought it was only used by cyclists, who I’d regularly see through the window of the M or J subway, which I traveled on to and from work. I guess I must have been looking at the bike lane, which is separate to the walk lane on the other side of the bridge.

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Central Park Reflections… with a little help from John Lennon

Marina Chetner

Today I ventured to Central Park for a couple of reasons. One, I was scared that I’d miss the chance to stroll the park’s beautiful walkways before winter, slow to arrive this year. And, I wanted to take some photos autumnal foliage. Who knows if I’ll have the opportunity to experience Central Park during a lengthy fall again?

“There’s nowhere you can be that isn’t where you’re meant to be…” John Lennon

I set out without a route in mind, which has become my preferred way of exploring with the Nikon camera. Two cases in point: While photographing the park’s beautiful vistas, I came across monuments I’d never seen before. And, I stumbled across a crowd paying tribute to John Lennon, one of the most loved songwriters and singers of our time.

“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” John Lennon

Like many parks  located…

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The Met’s Secret Garden

Marina Chetner

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is to New York (The Met) what the Musee d’Orsay is to Paris, and the Hermitage is to St Petersburg. That is, an outstanding big-city museum that’s too large to explore in one day, filled with fascinating exhibits, awe-inspiring artifacts and archaeological collections.

Abutting Central Park by Fifth Avenue and 82nd Street, the Met is located in my extended backyard. After a visit, I’m always inspired, whether by the Impressionist works of Monet, the Egyptian artifacts, or the pre-Columbian gold. The get that giddy feeling that makes me want to travel.

On the flipside, I find too much inspiration overwhelming. When this happens, I take pause in Ming Scholar’s Retreat, or what I call — the secret garden.

Well hidden between the Asian Galleries on the second floor, the garden is accessed through an moon gate crowned by a plaque — tanyou — that…

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Bountiful Brooklyn Botanic Garden (a 300 pound blooming gift included)

Marina Chetner

After working all week in Manhattan, spending time in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden feels like a hiatus. Flush with ponds, trees, and plants, it’s hard to picture the garden’s resplendent 52 acres as a onetime wasteland. Four busy roads surround the  perimeter, but you wouldn’t know it as the green interior is so peaceful. Whether it’s a case of thoughtful design or of a garden’s inherent nature, I’m not sure. Perhaps it’s the combination.

Hailing from landscape designer royalty, Brothers Frederick Jr. and John Charles Olmsted (sons of Central Park and Prospect Park designer Frederick Law Olmsted) drafted plans for the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, whose ultimate execution opened to the public in 1911. From 1912 until 1945, together with landscape architect, Harold Caparn, the site further developed into the artistic and educational facility it is today.

In spring and summer, the Garden is practically made for dozing — voluminous oaks…

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