simple is beautiful
New York Daily Photo: ICP
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Tuesday, 8 January 2008


In yesterday's post, I featured the controversial W.R. Grace Building. Equally criticized is the rather stark Grace Plaza at the rear of the building with an entrance at 1114 Avenue of the Americas. It is here, that in 1974, ICP (International School of Photography) expanded their school, creating a minicampus beneath the plaza. The glass pavilion in the photo (designed by the firm Gensler) serves as the school's entrance - it houses a small gallery, stairway (and lift) to the underground facility. The 27,000 square foot space features classrooms, black-and-white and color lab spaces; digital labs with resources for multimedia, digital photography, video editing and production; professional shooting studio, a library, student lounge, and exhibition gallery. ICP serves more than 5,000 students each year, offering 400 courses in a curriculum that ranges from darkroom classes to certificate and master's degree programs. The school has a continuing education program - this is popular for individuals who want to obtain quality instruction in photography without having to matriculate in a full-time university program.
ICP was founded in 1974 by Cornell Capa (brother of acclaimed war photographer Robert Capa) in the historic Willard Straight House on Fifth Avenue's Museum Mile. In 1999, the headquarters building at 1130 Fifth Avenue was sold. They move to 1133 Avenue of the Americas (across from the school) with 17,000 square feet of gallery space (designed by Gwathmey Siegel & Associates Architects), archives of more than 100,000 photos, a store and cafe. Many feel that the small glass pavilion has done much for the bleak plaza - it certainly provides a much needed focal point ...


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