Barry Lewis Shares New York City Insights at Open VISIONS Forum Lecture
Architectural historian Barry Lewis, best known for his decade-long series of video walks around New York City on WNET Channel 13, will share his vast knowledge of The Big Apple in “New York City: Past+Present/Fact+Fiction,” at 8 p.m. Monday, March 18, 2013, at Fairfield University’s Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts as part of its signature lecture series, Open VISIONS Forum. Introducing Mr. Lewis will be Paul J. Fitzgerald, S.J., Professor of Religious Studies and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at Fairfield University. Following Mr. Lewis’ presentation, there will be an informal conversation and discussion with Kurt Schlichting, Ph.D., E. Gerald Corrigan Chair of Sociology and Anthropology at Fairfield University, and Philip Eliasoph, Ph.D., professor of art history and founder/moderator of Open VISIONS Forum. The event is sponsored, in part, by Maritime Chevrolet. Moffly Media is the exclusive magazine sponsor for the 2012-13 Open VISIONS Forum series. Single tickets are $45.
Barry Lewis is an architectural historian who specializes in European and American architecture of the 18th to 20th centuries. Educated at the University of California at Berkeley, the Sorbonne, Paris, and the New School For Social Research, he currently teaches at both Cooper Union Forum (CU Forum) and the New York School of Interior Design (NYSID). He has appeared as the on-camera historian and genial co-host with David Hartman in a series of video "walking tours" of New York produced by Channel Thirteen (NYC's PBS station) which, after premiering in August, 1998, became an instant success, giving rise to one of the most popular series ever produced by the station. The episodes include the Emmy Award-nominated 42nd Street (August, 1998), Broadway (March, 1999), Harlem (December, 1999), Brooklyn (August, 2000), Greenwich Village (March, 2001), Central Park (December, 2001) and Newark (August, 2002). His writings have appeared in various guides to New York City including New York Walks (1992) and Berlitz Travellers' Guide to New York City (1992). His book, Kew Gardens: Urban Village in the Big City was published in May, 1999.
“New York City is endlessly fascinating from many perspectives,” said Dr. Kurt Schlichting, author of the award-winning “Grand Central Terminal: Railroads, Engineering, and Architecture” and “Grand Central’s Engineer: William J. Wilgus and the Planning of Modern Manhattan.” “Barry Lewis’ work focuses on the richness of the city’s neighborhoods at the street level where people live out their daily lives. On a broader perspective we can study the port of New York, the architecture of the skyscraper or Grand Central Terminal’s 100th anniversary, which we just celebrated on Friday, February 1st.”
Mr. Lewis’ 1996 series of five minute videos on five historic neighborhoods around New York City, The City Close-Up, was also broadcast by Channel 13 at various times in the 1998/2001 seasons. He was interviewed for the History Channel's 1999 documentary The Brooklyn Bridge and the Discovery Channel's 1999 documentary The Statue of Liberty. He was the on-camera commentator for Thirteen’s “Dutch New York,” produced in 2009 to honor the city’s Dutch origins, and his tips on Paris sites will be included in the soon-to-be-released “City Secrets: Paris,” as his observations were included in the original volume of that series, “City Secrets: Rome,” published in 2000 and updated in 2011.
At NYSID his courses cover architecture and interior design in Europe and America since the 18th century, and at CU Forum his course, open to the public, focuses on New York City's architecture and city planning from its Dutch founding to the Modern era of the late 20th century. He has presented lectures, seminars and keynote speeches in a variety of environments. His most recent works include a seminar comparing Times Square (NY) and Postdamer Platz (Berlin) development for a visiting delegation from the Berlin Office of City Planning and a day-long series of seminars on New York City at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C.
Tickets are available through the Quick Center Box Office: (203) 254-4010, or toll-free 1-877-ARTS-396. (1-877-278-7396). Tickets can also be purchased online at www.quickcenter.com.