Adam’s House in Paradise in the Lower East Side. Photo via Storefront for Art and Architecture.
“Its significance is underlined by the history of community design activism in the 1960’s, by the “green” movements, by the socio-political opposition to overscaled housing projects; and now, by the issue of gentrification in the East Village and the Lower East Side, and by the artist community which has become the inevitable staple in this process in New York City”
On September 14, the New York Times reported the passing of Adam Purple, an eccentric New York-based environmentalist and gardener, at the age 84. Early Storefront followers might know him through the 1984 exhibition Adam’s House In Paradise, a public campaign to preserve Purple’s remarkable and elaborately designed community garden, which he created in the rubble of Lower East Side abandoned lots and called the Garden of Eden. “Hope in a territory of poverty and drugs,” as Storefront’s co-founder Glenn Weiss referred to it, this 15,000 sq. ft. earthwork was featured in several publications, including National Geographic (September, 1984), London Art Monthly (October, 1984), and Lucy Lippard’s article Gardens: Some Metaphors for a Public Art in Art in America (November, 1981).
Before Whitney submission by Eric Fiss (New York, NY), 1985. “Whitney Goes Pop”
This past year, the Whitney Museum reopened in a new Renzo Piano-designed museum in the Meatpacking District, moving from its smaller space on the Upper East Side, the modernist building designed by Marcel Breuer and Hamilton P. Smith from 1963 to 1966. Space had been an issue from almost the beginning, with the Whitney opening outposts on Water Street, on Park Avenue, in Connecticut and other New York City office buildings over the decades.