Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Wallet Card at the Schwarzenbach Silk Clock (First ever wallet card video!)

Schwarzenbach Looms was a silk importer located at 470 Park Avenue from 1912 to 1932. In 1926 the company installed a large clock outside the building with three moving mechanical figures. The clock was designed by the architects McKim, Mead & White and sculpted by William Zorach. According to the New York Times account of the clocks unveiling, this is what is happening on the clock: "A figure of Zoroaster, 'the mastermind and doer of all things,' is perched atop the clock. At his feet is a cocoon, and beyond sits a slave representing the 'primitive forces and instincts of man.' Every hour Zoroaster waves a wand, and the slave, rising at the will of his master, swings a hammer against the cocoon. Promptly the 'Queen of Silk' emerges from the cocoon, a tulip in her hand, and not until the hour has ceased striking does she disappear."


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  2. Pretty neat. I think there's something sort of similar near my work in downtown Portland that I saw doing its thing once, but haven't read up on it.