Sunday, October 21, 2018

The Graying of Hudson

The buildings at 746-748 Warren Street, whose color scheme I have always admired since the days when they were the location of Jim Godman's Keystone Antiques, are getting a new coat of paint: gray and black, the colors dujour of Hudson.

The current trend toward painting buildings black and nearly black calls to mind a passage from Booth Tarkington's book The Magnificent Ambersons. 
There was one border section of the city which George never explored in his Sunday morning excursions. This was far out to the north where lay the new Elysian Fields of the millionaires, though he once went as far in that direction as the white house which Lucy had so admired long ago--her "Beautiful House.". . . The house was white no longer, nothing could be white which the town had reached, and the town reached far beyond the beautiful white house now. The owners had given up and painted it a despairing chocolate, suitable to the freight-yard life it was called upon to endure. 
Tarkington suggests the taste for painting houses dark colors at the turn of the 20th century can be attributed to the industrialization of cities. If a house were painted a dark color, it wouldn't show as much when the soot and grime in the air settled on its clapboards. In this post-industrial era, one wonders what's driving the current trend.


  1. It's taken Hudson a bit longer to grab onto this trend, but we are up in the "boonies" here. Other places, it has already come and gone. And it is a trend - not a style. Hopefully, it will die a well-deserved death and go away quickly. It is ugly and bleak and unattractive. The owners don't even consider that these buildings were never intended to have such an inappropriate colour scheme. Blech!

    1. I am sorry our carefully considered color selection is not to your liking. However, color is subjective and if you care to check reference books or historical color charts, you will see grey featured often. Your last sentence is not only presumptuous, it is also incorrect (and sadly, ‘pas très charmante')… Happy Halloween!

  2. I'm sad too about the colorlessness of Hudson! But I LOVE FOOD STUDIO!!!