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Waking up this morning with a bit of a headache after yesterday’s 12-hour marathon of The Weather Channel, I pulled up the shades in my guestroom here at a friend’s place in the UN Plaza, semi-fearing an apocalyptic landscape. Last night, when I took a break from rotting my brain on the non-stop Sandy broadcast, I went to grab a pizza from Domino’s, which was delivering on bikes right into the storm. While waiting for my pizza to cook, I walked over the FDR to capture some of the flooding. After I got back up to the apartment, looking down at the footbridge where I’d been taking pictures of the flooding, a stray taxi had been added to the scene. But I’m well aware that my personal perspective was limited on the overall devastation left in Sandy’s wake. I went looking on YouTube for some other sources. Here is a collection of animations I made, some from what I took, some from others:

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Millions of people from Maine to the Carolinas awoke Tuesday without power, and an eerily quiet New York City was all but closed off by car, train and air as superstorm Hurricane Sandy steamed inland, still delivering punishing wind and rain. The full extent of the damage in New Jersey, where the storm roared ashore [...]

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Ira Block

9/11: Faces Of Hope

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Thousands of survivors have walked the difficult path of recovery since the September 11, 2001 bombings of the World Trade Center.

And although I began documenting this horrific event shortly after the attacks, focusing on the people who emerged from the burning twin towers alive proved to be not only a daunting, but also a highly emotional task. Previously, I shot a story on the efforts to rebuild the downtown area and I also photographed the Twin Towers of Light on the six month anniversary of the attacks, but this was a different challenge.

I started by photographing the personal objects that were carried out of the towers and also the items that were salvaged during the clean-up process from the rubble. A pair of men’s loafers worn during the escape from a crumbling tower, a framed family picture carried by a woman whose thoughts were of surviving for her children, a crushed fireman’s helmet discovered buried under debris, all speak of the personal experiences that keep the memory of history vivid and fresh, even as the immediacy of tragedy fades.

Taking these pictures was a very emotional experience for me, knowing that some of the items I was shooting belonged to people who had perished. I had access to Hangar 17 at Kennedy International Airport, where some of the large pieces of the Twin Towers were being stored. Photographing what were once the two tallest buildings in the world, now reduced to fragments of metal was unnerving. I began to realize that documenting personal items and pieces of the Towers was not giving me the mood I wanted to achieve. It was too somber, too devastating. Ten years after the tragedy, my goal was to focus on the positive. To achieve this, I shifted my perspective to the living.

If these photos have a mission, it if this: to capture the images of the survivors, those who have moved forward anchored by faith, fortitude or family and those who still struggle with a healing process that remains painful, drawn out and elusive. Each has a story to tell.

Following the 10 year anniversary of the attacks, these photos were exhibited at Fotocare in New York City.



Ira Block is an internationally renowned photojournalist, teacher, and workshop leader who has produced over 30 stories for the National Geographic Magazine and its affiliates N.G. Traveler and Adventure.

He began his career as a newspaper photographer, earning numerous press club awards. As an expert in lighting, Ira is sought after for assignments ranging from shooting ancient artifacts in Greece to photographing dinosaur fossils in the Gobi desert and documenting Moche mummies in Peru. His momentous coffee table book “Saving America’s Treasures” was a collaborative effort among the Clinton White House, National Geographic Society, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Ira’s unique vision and outstanding lighting skills have made him the “go to photographer” for complex assignments.

He taught the first creative, digital photography class at the School for Visual Arts in New York City and is frequently called upon to review and critique the latest digital cameras and lenses. He works closely with National Geographic Expeditions lecturing and teaching photography around the world. Ira has also taught workshops in Bangkok and Maine, Abu Dhabi and San Diego, Boston, Seattle and New York City.

In addition to his editorial work Ira shoots commercial and corporate images, portraits, promotional materials and advertising for leading institutions. He also produces corporate digital webcast videos. His photographic exhibit “Faces of Hope”, portraits of survivors and images of objects retrieved from the aftermath of the World Trade Center tragedy, are part of the permanent collection of the National September 11 Memorial and Museum.

His most recent story in the October National Geographic “Earth Before the Ice”, investigates a prehistoric global warming. Ira lives in New York City with his wife and is a frequent blogger on the latest digital camera equipment and gear, lighting techniques, and creative vision in photography.


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Ira Block


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Damaged scaffolding hung from the Brooklyn Bridge on March 13 after a crane being towed behind a tugboat on the East River struck the scaffolding. Traffic across the bridge was snarled but the historic structure was undamaged. (Claudio Papapietro for The Wall Street Journal )

Jaynie Baker appeared with her attorney Robert C. Gottlieb in Manhattan Criminal Court on March 13 on a charge of promoting prostitution. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal )

About 30 children competed in a chess tournament at The Cloisters Museum in New York on March 11. The museum is currently displaying an exhibition ‘The Game of Kings: Medieval Ivory Chessmen from the Isle of Lewis.’ (Ramin Talaie for The Wall Street Journal)

Trent Furnace, center, of Brockport, N.Y., was among hundreds of dancers who came to audition for Pilobolus last week in Midtown. (Claudio Papapietro for The Wall Street Journal )

The steak au poivre at Mon Petit Café, at 801 Lexington Ave. in Manhattan. (Byron Smith for The Wall Street Journal)

Catherine Carbaja wore a costume in the gallery of the Cindy Sherman exhibit at MoMA during a cocktail reception and dance party inside the museum on March 10. (Astrid Stawiarz for The Wall Street Journal)

An Occupy member waved a U.S. flag in New Haven’s camp. The encampment, located on the New Haven Green Park, escaped eviction after a judge granted the activists a stay until March 28. New Haven is one of the last two remaining Occupy camps in New England. (Natalie Keyssar for The Wall Street Journal)

Chocolate lava cake at Meat Me, at 726 Amsterdam Ave., between 95th and 96th streets in New York. (Julie Glassberg for the Wall Street Journal )

Ronald P. Grelsamer showed some of his 1960s Beatles and space program memorabilia. (Claudio Papapietro for The Wall Street Journal )

Armand Olivier Bell searched for a tie to pair with a bottle of Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio at Saks Fifth Avenue. (Natalie Keyssar for The Wall Street Journal)

Artist Elizabeth Behl, who is known as ‘Z,’ debuted her show “Battle For Lagniappe” at 7Eleven Gallery in the West Village. (Daniella Zalcman for The Wall Street Journal)

The International Gem Tower on West 47th Street in the diamond district of Manhattan. (Claudio Papapietro for The Wall Street Journal)

Lloyd Knight, a dancer with the Martha Graham Dance Company, rehearsed for the company’s performance of the 1939 comic work ‘Every Soul is a Circus,’ at the Joyce Theater in Manhattan. (Claudio Papapietro for The Wall Street Journal)

Flowers bloomed in Battery Park on March 14. (Emily Berl for The Wall Street Journal)

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A bullet hole was visible in a window of Fest’s Barber Shop on Marcus Garvey Boulevard in Brooklyn on Thursday. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

The sky darkened over Soho on Thursday, just before a storm broke over Manhattan. (Daniella Zalcman for The Wall Street Journal)

Jose Luis changed from street clothes into a Mickey Mouse costume on the corner of 48th and Broadway on Sept. 21. He earns money by posing with tourists outside of the M&M store in New York. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

Mitsu Tsuchiya of Nylon Magazine looked at Bonobos pants on board the Black Knight during an early-evening sail on the Hudson River on Monday. Men's clothing company Bonobos held an event on the boat to announce its new line. (Daniella Zalcman for The Wall Street Journal)

Café China is a new restaurant opened by Xian Zhang and Yiming Wang, with a 1930s Shanghai feel and authentic Chinese cuisine. (Lauren Lancaster for The Wall Street Journal)

St. Francis College ecology students practiced seining, an old-fashioned net-fishing technique, in order to study wildlife species in the East River on Monday. During the lesson, the students found striped bass, flounder, invasive northern asian shore crabs, and northern kingfish. (Kevin Hagen for The Wall Street Journal)

A Parks employee cleaned up after a ceremony at Theodore Roosevelt Park in Manhattan. The names of American 2010 Nobel Laureates — Peter A. Diamond, Dale T. Mortensen, and Richard F. Heck — were inscribed on the monument and unveiled Tuesday. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal )

The Stool Pigeon cocktail at The Tippler, a new cocktail bar in the basement of Chelsea Market. (Lauren Lancaster for The Wall Street Journal)

Melvin Miller danced during a service marking Rosh Hashana at the All Souls Sanctuary on the Upper East side on Thursday. The service, held by the East Side Synagogue, was conducted in English and Hebrew and featured instrumental and vocal music. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

Rapper Jay-Z, a minority owner of the New Jersey Nets, announced that the team will be known as the Brooklyn Nets when they move into the Barclays Center arena before the start of the 2012 NBA season. (Kevin Hagen for The Wall Street Journal)

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In sound stages from the Chelsea Piers to the Brooklyn Navy Yard, designers rebuild the landscape to fit plot lines, making New York seem brighter and sadder, wealthier and grittier, older and newer.

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Interview with Robert Clark on this sequence he made on 9-11..Rob was my good neighbor for 4 years.



Rob tell me about the making of this picture..this sequence


I had just come back from spending the night at the house of my girlfriend..Got to 475 Kent at 8:30am ..She called me after and told me a plane had hit the Twin towers…The view from my apartment was of the Twin Towers, but I was on the computer , my back was to this scene..

Luckily, I had my cameras ready to go and packed because I was set to go on a Natgeo story…So i grabbed the whole kit and headed for the roof

DAH  ..

How long were you on the roof before you saw this second plane coming?


I got up to the roof at 8:54 a.m. and the second plane hit Tower #2 at 9:03 a.m., so I did not have much time to think. I had a 280mm (converted) lens and shooting film. I was composing and shooting Tower #1 burning, thinking that was THE shot. I had only 10 pictures left on the roll , when I saw the second plane coming…The first picture above was the second picture I took, frame #25…I shot the rest of the roll in the next 10 seconds….I knew i had it… Certain. Was also certain the world had just changed.


I remember seeing you that day riding your bike up 6 th avenue, heading uptown..I was walking up too, and I remember you offered me your bike..This must have been just a few hours after you took this picture. I never forgot that offer. I think you have a real sense of community in you Rob. I mean you built population of the now famous Kibbutz where we all lived and from our roof this picture was made. Do you miss our kibbutz community since you have now moved away?


Yes of course. It was a real photographic  inspiration just living in that building. After all we had Chris Anderson, Tim Hetherington, Alex Majoli, Stanley Greene, Paolo Pellegrin, Thomas Dvorzak, Lorena Ros, David Coventry and Alex Di Suvero and oh yea, you!! So many many good times and of course the list of visitors to that building is EVERYBODY in the biz.. I mean almost everybody in the photo world in New York came to our building. You played no small part in that yourself Harvey.


Well you made this historic picture before I moved into the building. But you were a great neighbor for 3 years . If I needed a cup of sugar , you had one. All good things do indeed come to an end. Damn. Those golden years at the Kibbutz went by too fast. Fortunately we all have so many other pictures from this rooftop , that we can try to forget yours. Great shot, but we do want to forget ..Right?


Now on the 10th anniversary, we realize we really cannot forget. Because it is more than a memory. It is still happening. An ongoing attack. Or at least we think it is. Affects still today almost every aspect of our lives. Not just America. Worldwide.
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Rob Clark


Editor’s note:

Rob will be jumping in on the comments today to answer your questions… – dah

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Jane’s Carousel, the vintage merry-go-round, has a new home in Brooklyn Bridge Park, a pavilion designed by noted architect Jean Nouvel.

All photographs by Daniella Zalcman for The Wall Street Journal.

Dumbo development pioneer David Walentas and his wife Jane donated a vintage carousel and more than $15 million to Brooklyn Bridge Park. Jane’s Carousel, as it is called, sits between the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges in DUMBO.

Above, construction is under way on April 7, 2011.

The couple commissioned French architect Jean Nouvel to design the pavilion that will house Jane’s Carousel when it opens later this month. The structure cost more than $9 million to build.

Construction workers assemble the steel frame of the pavilion.

The carousel was originally made in 1922 and installed at Idora Park in Ohio. The couple purchased the carousel in 1984 from a theme park in Ohio.

Over the years, Ms. Walentas said she has kept the carousel in her studios and in storage. Children ride the carousel for the last time on March 25, before it is disassembled and brought to the studio to be retouched.

Ms. Walentas has been restoring the vintage carousel, which includes 48 hand-carved horses and two chariots, for the past 27 years.

Ms. Walentas stripped away decades of paint to reveal the original design and color palette underneath.

The pavilion uses clear acrylic panels cast in Colorado and industrial accordion doors designed and manufactured in Switzerland. The steel structure was fabricated in Canada and the granite for the steps was quarried in China. Above, construction crews continue work on the steel frame on June 17.

Mr. Walentas discovered DUMBO in 1978 and purchased much of the neighborhood’s real estate. Ms. Walentas said the carousel and its placement was part of the park’s master plan.

Ms. Walentas worked as an art director in cosmetics and fashion for many years before taking on the restoration project.

Ms. Walentas added pure gold leaf, pin striping, and faceted mirrors and jewels to the carousel. The horses were restored in their original details and colors.

Here, Ms. Walentas touches up the gold leaf on a carousel panel.

The mechanical systems of the merry-go-round were modernized and the carousel was adorned with 1,200 lights. Construction crews put the finishing touches on the frame last month.

$3.5 million of the couple’s financial gift went toward completing construction of the park, which sits along the East River.

Here, Ms. Walentas moves a carousel horse to the park from her studio on September 2.

Mr. and Ms. Walentas continue down a street in DUMBO.

Friends of the Walentas’ help bring the horses through the park.

The construction crew installs the horses.

Workers install the poles that will hold the horses.

The ride was the first carousel placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1975.

Jane’s Carousel will open to the public on September 16.

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Tom Chase, left, helped his uncle, Richard Filipelli, break down what remained of his home on Cozy Avenue in East Haven, Conn., Monday, after Tropical Storm Irene swept through the region. (Jesse Neider for The Wall Street Journal)

Jonathan Fey paddled his way down Nassau Avenue in Freeport, N.Y., after the storm flooded the neighborhood. (Joel Cairo for The Wall Street Journal)

Pam Young was one of the homeowners left cleaning up Irene’s mess in the Catskill Mountain town of Prattsville, N.Y. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

The streets of Paterson, N.J., were hood-deep in water from the Passaic River as Irene’s rainfall backed up streams and storm drains across much of the state. (Mark Dye/Reuters)

A large queue formed Tuesday morning at Ladurée, the newly opened Upper East Side outpost of the French bakery long lauded for its delicate cookies, jams, sorbets and candles. (Mustafah Abdulaziz for The Wall Street Journal )

Emily Season, right, rode her unicycle on the Brooklyn Bridge during a group unicycle ride to Coney Island during the 2011 NYC Unicycle Festival Friday. (Philip Montgomery for The Wall Street Journal)

Members of the National Guard convened at the Lexington Armory in Manhattan Monday to wrap up their work on the tropical storm. The guardsmen massed at several places in the city. (Daniella Zalcman for The Wall Street Journal)

Ironworker Gary Russo, also known as the ‘Second Avenue Sinatra,’ sang during his lunch break on East 73rd Street and Second Avenue in Manhattan Wednesday. After weeks at the Upper East Side location, he sang his last lunch concert Thursday before leaving for a new construction site. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal)

The Blackberry Bramble is a popular cocktail at Silver Lining, 75 Murray St. in Tribeca. The speakeasy-style cocktail bar is aimed at jazz aficionados. (Lauren Lancaster for The Wall Street Journal)

Felix Camacho slid into third base during the Borough President’s Cup Little League Championship at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday. The Little League Raiders beat the Rolando Paulino Little League, 9-7, in nine innings. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal)

James Fisher, left, released bees to find their queen and a new hive Monday in Fort Greene Park in Brooklyn; the swarm’s previous hive fell off of its tree. (Mustafah Abdulaziz for The Wall Street Journal)

The Tuna Duo, a dish including tuna tartar and ahi tuna, at Blue Water Seafood in Red Bank, N.J. (Bill Denver for the Wall Street Journal)

A large elm tree on Hicks Street in Brooklyn Heights was one of many trees brought down by the tropical storm Sunday. (Claudio Papapietro for The Wall Street Journal )

A Bronx teen, right, and Mark Colbert, a volunteer with the Stoked Mentoring Program through the non-profit Up2Us, prepared to enter the water for a surfing lesson at Rockaway Beach on Wednesday. (Philip Montgomery for The Wall Street Journal)

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and State Sen. James Seward comforted Prattsville, N.Y., residents Emily and Richard Morse during a visit to the town on Wednesday. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

County Road 17 northeast of Route 23A in Greene County, New York, was washed out in the storm. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

Darren Renatta and his mother, Beth, investigated the flooding along the East River waterfront as the storm swooped in Sunday morning. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

People took part in a game of human chess at the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument in Riverside Park in Manhattan, as part of the ‘Summer on the Hudson’ events Thursday. (Philip Montgomery for The Wall Street Journal)

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