Unpacking His Library
Rehoused by friends and colleagues in a reading room for new generations of students, Michael Sorkin’s books keep his legacy in circulation.
In Western Queens, activists see a waterfront warehouse as an opportunity to broaden the horizons of a community's control over its own future.
Property of the Pandemic
From face masks to diaries, institutions are collecting artifacts from daily life under COVID-19. One itinerant museum has preserved letters from landlords to tenants for posterity.
Lost in Transit
An artist acquires a collection of unclaimed rings gathered from New York City's subway system, instigating an unconventional search for their origins and values.
Radicals and Real Estate
This is what democracy looks like: not only public squares, but office buildings. In the Lower East Side, the Peace Pentagon was the source point for four decades of resistance.
Do You Remember How It Was?
Residents recall a decade of upheaval in the East New York Oral History Project.
Seeding the Next Epoch
Seed libraries can restart agriculture after disasters. But what of useless plants? Two artists save the spontaneous, weedy species that serve no purpose but their own.
Has Any City Ever Planned for Love?
For Shelf Life, a film made in 1964 provides an enduring lens through which to look at density's delights.
Architecture in the Basement
In the first installment of Shelf Life, Janet Parks, curator of the Avery Drawings and Archives at Columbia University, takes us through its architectural underworld, uncovering the collection's treasures.
Urban Memory Infrastructure
A city needs memory like it needs streets, trees, and people. But how do we build an infrastructure to contain and deliver the city's history? Ben Vershbow, former director of NYPL Labs, talks with Shannon Mattern about libraries as stewards of the past in the age of Google Maps.