5. Woolworth Building and Singer Building by Rachael Robinson Elmer
Another skyscraper that inspired artists and which was viewed as a work of art itself was the Woolworth Building. Besides artists such as John Marin, Vermont native Rachael Robinson Elmer (1878-1919) found a muse in Cass Gilbert’s 1913 creation. While studying at the Arts Student League she had became enchanted by New York and found an outlet for her art through mass produced postcards. She produced two sets, issued in 1914 and 1916, which sold well and although her works were signed, her images were more well known than her name.
“The Singer Building from Brooklyn Bridge” (1914) by Rachael Robinson Elmer. Via NY Public Library Digital Collections
In addition to the Woolworth Building, as part of the “Art Lovers New York Series,” Robinson Elmer also illustrated a number of other New York scenes, including the Singer Building, the tallest building in the world upon completion in 1899 and the tallest building ever demolished by its owner, in 1968. Sadly, she died in in the influenza epidemic of 1919.
Join us on an upcoming VIP tour of the Woolworth Building, usually off-limits to the public: