7. There Was a 1920s Grand Central Art School

Grand Central School of Art Gallery with fountain
The Grand Central Art Galleries and School of Art in 1923. Image in public domain from the 1923 opening exhibition catalog, from the New York Art Resources Consortium and contributed by the Frick Art Reference Library.

The sixth floor of Grand Central was once home to the Grand Central School of Art and the Grand Central Art Galleries. The galleries were established in 1922 by a collection of famous artists that included John Singer Sargent, Walter Leighton Clark, and Edmund Greacen. The school was founded a year later and boasted such notable pupils and teachers as Arshile Gorky, Daniel Chester French, Willem de Kooning, and Norman Rockwell. There were 900 students at its peak.

The galleries were designed by the prestigious firm Delano & Aldrich, who also designed the Knickerbocker Club, the Union ClubOheka Castle on Long Island. At one point, the galleries stretched over 14,000 square feet, taking up 20 rooms. While the galleries lived on in different locations until 1994, the art school closed in 1944. The sixth floor gallery and art school space at Grand Central is now occupied b yailroad operations and offices.