- Clockwise from top left: Sketch’s storefront; John Doe Records sign; Max, of Regan and Smith; Wendy McDaris’ new gallery; signs on the door of Sketch.
News and just plain existential reality from the front lines of Warren Street on a typically quiet Wednesday afternoon: Bardin Polomo, a shop from NYC, will be opening up at 602 Warren Street, the address formerly occupied by Regan and Smith, whose owners are moving their wares with youthful speed and vigor into the space directly across the street, formerly occupied by Historical Materialism. Yesterday afternoon, Regan and Smith’s dog, Max, guarded his owners’ (humans’) nearly empty former storefront, exciting interest (and perhaps a little unnecessary concern) among passersby.
An art supply store named Sketch will open in the former Victorian Gallery furniture store at the corner of 7th and Warren. Two signs on the door form the phrase “You Can’t Eat Antiques” — a phrase that John Doe Records’ store owner Dan Seward says he came up with over ten years ago to put on hats for sale. In the same spirit, the sandwich-board sign in front of John Doe currently has two similarly Yippie- like pronouncements, one on each side: “Fresh Nothing Here” and “Taste the Wax.”
Right across from the cleverly makeshift craft- paper montage of Sketch’s storefront windows is Wendy McDaris’ good- looking new gallery, McDaris Fine Art & Advisory, which will open this Saturday with a show of work by local artist Dawn Breeze. –Scott Baldinger
Given the retrograde design quality of so many of Hudson’s restorations and so much of its new construction, two new projects seem to have been taking a refreshingly sensible and attractive turn for the better. One looks, as of yet, to be a simple yet crucially needed paint job; the other is a new building abutting a severely compromised historical one that has been the source of much discord and worry over the years.
The first, the salvaging of two residential buildings left for rot by the former owners of the Armory, are being worked on by none other than the folks at Galvan, who I and others have criticized for their lack of action and varying quality in the past. The improving sight of these inexplicably neglected structures, which have for so long been a drain on an especially historically grand avenue of stately turn- of-the century homes, is especially gratifying (and as of yet, not polarizing.) A very promising start, it they aren’t transmogrified beyond their pleasantly simple bones.
Amicably contemporary in design, the submission by architect Jane Smith (formerly a member the Historic Perservation Commission) for the new senior center headquarters on 3rd street, is a refreshing solution to a difficult spatial problem: nonaggressivey natural in material, it is neither oppressively slavish to the original nor stridently contrary. Fresh thinking crammed into an oddly confined lot, it sort of reminds me of the sloped- roof library additions I recall growing up with in the 1960s, the reading pits of which I loved to hunker down into. It is nothing if civic minded. So far, I think everyone at the Preservation Commission and in the community at large should feel comfortable giving a thumbs up to these promising grace notes in town. –Scott Baldinger
A visual souvenir worth sharing: Claverack Landing’s concert with flutist Paula Robison and classical guitarist Frederic Hand, performed last Saturday at one of Hudson’s best- looking spaces, the main chapel at Christ Church Episcopal. –S.B
A couple of months ago, architect Michael Davis went before the Hudson Planning Commission to get approval for his plan to bring a cosmopolitan variety of food truck vendors and a beer/wine garden into the lot adjoining his antiques shop, 3FortySeven (347 Warren Street). The commission asked him to present more detailed renderings, which will be reviewed by the committee in a meeting next week at City Hall (April 11 at 7 p.m.). 3FortySeven manager Giovanni di Mola posted the first of these on Facebook a few days ago, and they look, to this hungry observer, good enough to eat. (In more detailed drawings to come, di Mola says, the south side will not be overtaken by a forest.) “We need everyone’s support to get the blessing we need to build our outdoor space and have Tortillaville, Yum Yum Noodle, Truck Pizza, and Taste of India, plus one other (still interviewing) set up shop.” And the sooner the better, I say. — Scott Baldinger