A midcentury artist’s New York from her window

Born in 1887 in Vienna, Emma Fordyce MacRae grew up in early 20th century New York—attending the private Chapin and Brearley Schools before enrolling in the Art Students League in 1911 and studying with John Sloan.

She made a name for herself as a member of the Philadelphia Ten, a group of female artists who exhibited together.

As the 20th century went on, MacRae married and moved to 888 Park Avenue. She apparently never stopped painting, keeping a studio at 12 West 69th Street, according to her New York Times obituary in 1974.

“New York From My Window” was painted between 1957 and 1962. It’s a deceptively simple work depicting a streetscape under blue skies almost empty of traffic and people.

What I want to know is, where exactly is the window she painted from, and what sliver of New York did this artist who should be better known immortalize?

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6 Responses to “A midcentury artist’s New York from her window”

  1. Mid-Century Manhattan, Emma Fordyce MacRae (because) – This isn't happiness Says:

    […] Mid-Century Manhattan, Emma Fordyce MacRae (because) […]

  2. Jonathan Goldman Says:

    Is it possible that this west 82nd Street off Broadway, looking east, with the Beresford on the horizon?

  3. Steven Says:

    Seems more likely that this is the view to the west from 888 Park Avenue, which is between 78th and 79th. That would still be the Beresford in the distance, but seen from the east, not the west.

    • Bob Says:

      Agreed. She painted this view several times, in the park (Victory Girls; Boating in Central Park; Sunday in the Park; Fountain, Central Park).

  4. ephemeralnewyork Says:

    Painting from 888 Park Avenue certainly makes sense. And that does look like the Beresford, which has those wonderful turrets!

  5. moiketsisemasecom Says:

    Nice art

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