Click here for detail of Troy, New York Townscape.

Click here to return to Townscapes.

“This painting attempts to document the unique lifestyle that was Troy throughout most of its remarkable 19th century history. It’s also an example of the astonishing contrast with the architecture that has evolved during the last half of this century.

Enormous philosophical and economic changes have influenced the way our cities have been restructured to effect innovations of current lifestyles – topographically, technologically and architecturally. Witness today’s multiple housing, much of it highrise, of concrete, steel and glass … thruways laid hither and yon across our landscape … and suburban malls with their specialty stores and acres of parking which have spelled the demise of so many of our neighborhoods and downtown shopping habits.

That’s why for me, Troy has always held a special fascination. It was, after all, the cradle of the industrial revolution in America. It occupies that critical juncture where sea level ends and the canal system connects to north and west with eastern commerce. Maybe it was good sense. But more likely it was just good fortune that Troy has been able to maintain its beautiful architecture for those of us who love and admire its extraordinary spirit and craftsmanship.

Surely Troy’s wonderful architecture adds a critical dimension that would be sorely missed if it had disappeared or never existed. That’s the critical dimension I have tried to capture in my townscape of Troy.

Leonard Weber