WNYC Studio: Schanker Mural – New York NY


New York’s largest public radio station, WNYC, was housed in the Manhattan Municipal Building at 1 Centre St. from 1924 until 2008, when it moved to an improved location. In 1939, the building’s Studio B received four WPA Federal Art Project murals by Stuart Davis, Byron Browne, Louis Schanker and John von Wicht. Schanker’s is the only one still remaining in the building (no longer operating as the WNYC center).

At the live dedication of the murals, Davis made important and controversial remarks about the state of art, politics and the New Deal, referring to what this summarizer of the broadcast refers to as:

“the flux and struggle around the issue of abstract art during the previous two decades, a state of affairs reflected in the lives of Davis and two of the other muralists: Byron Browne and Louis Schanker. These men, half a generation younger than Davis, one a champion of the purely abstract, the other working somewhat representationally here, were engaged in long-term, active protests of major museums for their neglect of abstract work, both before and after this unveiling. Schanker’s first showing, at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1935, took place within a year of his own participation in one such protest against the same institution…

Schanker was a major printmaker in the 1930s and one of the earliest woodcut artists to make abstractions; he was also a sculptor…

Of all the [WNYC] works, Schanker’s is the most representational — with easily discernible musical images — and Jewell praises this one most…

The murals were executed in WNYC’s Studio B during what the Assistant Program Director, Seymour N. Siegel, recalled as a “hot, sticky summer.”… Schanker’s mural is still in the Municipal Building, hanging in a hallway on the 25th floor.” (https://www.wnyc.org)

We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.


Location Info

1 Centre St.
New York, NY 10007

Coordinates: 40.7130276, -74.0037529

One comment on “WNYC Studio: Schanker Mural – New York NY

  1. Great website! For more information regarding the WNYC murals see:

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