As a travel writer open and game to exploring the offbeat and oddball within a few hours or one day's drive of New York City (Virginia to Maine), I've stumbled on some pretty bizarre, eccentric and/or downright weird things. Here's just a sampling from this year's explorations.
Wright would go on to become the impossibly prolific leader of the Prairie School: He completed more than 1,100 designs, nearly half of which were built, and a number of his masterworks were set in and around the Windy City.
I'm exposed to a lot of "design." I have watched dozens of designers re-design broken homes. And while they do make those homes work better, they seem to rely on lots of slick finishes and design parlor tricks.
The Paris-based United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization in June designated an ancient Native American complex known as Poverty Point, east of Monroe, as Louisiana's first World Heritage site.
In the history of art, the importance of patrons has rarely been underestimated. The egregious result of Solomon Guggenheim's support for Rudolf Bauer is one of the most disturbing instances. In Bauer, it receives superlative treatment.
Once the wealthiest city in the country with the most innovative architecture, whole neighborhoods and waterfronts have been revitalized, and there's a growing cultural and culinary scene that goes far beyond chicken wings.
A loving tribute written by Gail Collins to honor political activist and feminist icon Gloria Steinem caused me to stop and think about some of the progress that's been made in the women's rights movement and the incredible distance that still needs to be traveled.
As a resident of Los Angeles, I'm always surprised to hear people speaking poorly of the "Hollywood" experience, as if a few persistent buskers and a bad wax museum near the corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue actually define the entire neighborhood.
The wonderful Janetta Rebold Benton is lecturing again at the Michael Schimmel Center for the Arts at Pace University in Lower Manhattan. In a fascinating conversation we had with her at the Met Museum, we discussed lecturing, teaching and many other topics that day.
The world-renowned architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, wrote in his autobiography, "The maple-wood blocks are in my fingers to this day. These primary forms and figures were the secret of all effects which were ever got into the architecture of the world."