A face looks out over West 15th Street

This head topped off with a winged helmet—is he a soldier? A nobleman?—is carved into the sixth floor facade of a Chelsea tenement off Eighth Avenue.

His face, as well as the flowers and fruit and other decorative elements, give this drab building on a not-so-remarkable block a bit of enchantment.

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5 Responses to “A face looks out over West 15th Street”

  1. James Says:

    That is almost certainly Mercury, god of commerce.

  2. wildnewyork Says:

    Interesting, thanks. Wonder what he was doing on a tenement.

  3. Quid plura? | “Now half the world hates the other half…” Says:

    […] Ephemeral New York sees a face over West 15th. […]

  4. Carmen E. Corrigan Says:

    Mysterious and sadly obscure. Too bad no one is safeguarding these treasures.

  5. Somebuddy Says:

    Definitely Mercury. Mercury was also, most prominently, the messenger of the gods. He carried dreams to sleeping people, escorted the recently departed to the afterlife, etc. He is also known as the god of cunning and invention. Perhaps it is the latter that was the impetus for this carving.

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