Roberta Smith is co-chief art critic of The New York Times and a lecturer on contemporary art. She is the first woman to hold that position. Born in New York City and raised in Lawrence, Smith studied at Grinnell College in Iowa, her career in the arts started in 1968 while an undergraduate summer intern at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington D. C. In 1968-69 she participated in the Art History/Museum Studies track of the Whitney Independent Study Program where she met and developed an affinity for Donald Judd and became interested in minimal art. After graduation, she returned to New York City in 1971 to take a secretarial job at the Museum of Modern Art, followed by part-time assistant jobs to Judd in the early 1970s, Paula Cooper for the first three years that she had her gallery, beginning in 1972. While at the Paula Cooper Gallery she wrote exhibition reviews for Artforum, subsequently for Art in America, the Village Voice and other publications as well. Smith has written and spokes about Judd on numerous occasions throughout her career, upon his death in 1995, Smith penned the New York Times obituary for Judd.
Smith began writing for The New York Times in 1986, became the newspaper's co-chief art critic in 2011. Smith has written numerous essays for catalogues and monographs on contemporary artists, wrote the featured essay in the Judd catalogue raisonné published by the National Gallery of Canada in 1975, she writes not only about contemporary art but about the visual arts in general, including decorative arts and outsider art and architecture. Smith is a longtime advocate for museums to be open to the public. In 2012, Smith received an honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from the San Francisco Art Institute. In 2017, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago awarded Smith her second honorary Doctorate. Smith married Jerry Saltz, senior art critic for New York Magazine, in 1992; the couple lives in an apartment in Greenwich Village in New York City, that both use as a writing studio. 2003 Frank Jewett Mather Award for Art Criticism, College Art Association. 2009 AICA/USA Distinguished Critic Lecture. 2014 Marina Kellen French Distinguished Visitor, The American Academy in Berlin.
Articles in The New York Times, accessed May 18, 2009 Interview in the Brooklyn Rail, accessed May 18, 2009
Contemporary art is the art of today, produced in the second half of the 20th century or in the 21st century. Contemporary artists work in a globally influenced, culturally diverse, technologically advancing world, their art is a dynamic combination of materials, methods and subjects that continue the challenging of boundaries, well underway in the 20th century. Diverse and eclectic, contemporary art as a whole is distinguished by the lack of a uniform, organising principle, ideology, or "-ism". Contemporary art is part of a cultural dialogue that concerns larger contextual frameworks such as personal and cultural identity, family and nationality. In vernacular English and contemporary are synonyms, resulting in some conflation of the terms modern art and contemporary art by non-specialists; some define contemporary art as art produced within "our lifetime," recognising that lifetimes and life spans vary. However, there is a recognition; the classification of "contemporary art" as a special type of art, rather than a general adjectival phrase, goes back to the beginnings of Modernism in the English-speaking world.
In London, the Contemporary Art Society was founded in 1910 by the critic Roger Fry and others, as a private society for buying works of art to place in public museums. A number of other institutions using the term were founded in the 1930s, such as in 1938 the Contemporary Art Society of Adelaide, an increasing number after 1945. Many, like the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston changed their names from ones using "Modern art" in this period, as Modernism became defined as a historical art movement, much "modern" art ceased to be "contemporary"; the definition of what is contemporary is always on the move, anchored in the present with a start date that moves forward, the works the Contemporary Art Society bought in 1910 could no longer be described as contemporary. Particular points that have been seen as marking a change in art styles include the end of World War II and the 1960s. There has been a lack of natural break points since the 1960s, definitions of what constitutes "contemporary art" in the 2010s vary, are imprecise.
Art from the past 20 years is likely to be included, definitions include art going back to about 1970. And early 21st cent. Both an outgrowth and a rejection of modern art". Many use the formulation "Contemporary Art", which avoids this problem. Smaller commercial galleries and other sources may use stricter definitions restricting the "contemporary" to work from 2000 onwards. Artists who are still productive after a long career, ongoing art movements, may present a particular issue. Sociologist Nathalie Heinich draws a distinction between modern and contemporary art, describing them as two different paradigms which overlap historically, she found that while "modern art" challenges the conventions of representation, "contemporary art" challenges the notion of an artwork. She regards Duchamp's Fountain as the starting point of contemporary art, which gained momentum after World War II with Gutai's performances, Yves Klein's monochromes and Rauschenberg's Erased de Kooning Drawing. One of the difficulties many people have in approaching contemporary artwork is its diversity—diversity of material, subject matter, time periods.
It is "distinguished by the lack of a uniform organizing principle, ideology, or -ism" that we so see in other, oftentimes more familiar, art periods and movements. Broadly speaking, we see Modernism as looking at modernist principles—the focus of the work is self-referential, investigating its own materials. Impressionism looks at our perception of a moment through light and color as opposed to attempts at stark realism. Contemporary art, on the other hand, does not have single objective or point of view, its view instead is unclear reflective of the world today. It can be, contradictory and open-ended. There are, however, a number of common themes. While these are not exhaustive, notable themes include: identity politics, the body and migration, contemporary society and culture and memory, institutional and political critique. Post-modern, post-structuralist and Marxist theory have played important roles in the development of contemporary theories of art; the functioning of the art world is dependent on art institutions, ranging from major museums to private galleries, non-profit spaces, art schools and publishers, the practices of individual artists, writers and philanthropists.
A major division in the art world is between the for-profit and non-profit sectors, although in recent years the boundaries between for-profit private and non-profit public institutions have become blurred. Most well-known contemporary art is exhibited by professional artists at commercial contemporary art galleries, by private collectors, art auctions, corporation
Donald Judd was an American artist associated with minimalism. In his work, Judd sought autonomy and clarity for the constructed object and the space created by it achieving a rigorously democratic presentation without compositional hierarchy, it created an outpouring of effervescent works that defied the term "minimalism". He is considered the leading international exponent of "minimalism," and its most important theoretician through such seminal writings as "Specific Objects". Judd voices his unorthodox perception of minimalism in Arts Yearbook 8, where he asserts; the common aspects are too general and too little common to define a movement. The differences are greater than the similarities" Through his work Judd shines light on the profound effect on new three dimensional by specificity and generality. Judd was born in Missouri, he served in the Army from 1946 to 1947 as an engineer and in 1948 began his studies in philosophy at the College of William and Mary transferring to Columbia University School of General Studies.
At Columbia, he earned a degree in philosophy and worked towards a master's in art history under Rudolf Wittkower and Meyer Schapiro. At this time he attended night classes at the Art Students League of New York, he supported himself by writing art criticism for major American art magazines between 1959 and 1965. In 1968 Judd bought a five-story cast-iron building, designed by Nicholas Whyte in 1870, at 101 Spring Street for under $70,000, serving as his New York residence and studio. Over the next 25 years, Judd renovated the building floor by floor, sometimes installing works he purchased or commissioned from other artists. Judd died of Lymphoma in New York City on February 12, 1994. In the late 1940s, Donald Judd began to practice as a painter, his first solo exhibition, of expressionist paintings, opened in New York in 1957. From the mid-1950s to 1961, as he explored the medium of the woodcut, Judd progressively moved from figurative to abstract imagery, first carving organic rounded shapes moving on to the painstaking craftsmanship of straight lines and angles.
His artistic style soon moved away from illusory media and embraced constructions in which materiality was central to the work. He would not have another one person show until the Green Gallery in 1963, an exhibition of works that he thought worthy of showing. By 1963 Judd had established an essential vocabulary of forms — ‘stacks’, ‘boxes’ and ‘progressions’ — which preoccupied him for the next thirty years. Most of his output was in freestanding "specific objects", that used simple repeated forms to explore space and the use of space. Humble materials such as metals, industrial plywood and color-impregnated Plexiglas became staples of his career. Judd's first floor box structure was made in 1964, his first floor box using Plexiglas followed one year later. By 1964, he began work on wall-mounted sculptures, first developed the curved progression format of these works in 1964 as a development from his work on an untitled floor piece that set a hollow pipe into a solid wooden block. While Judd executed early works himself, in 1964 he began delegating fabrication to professional artisans and manufacturers based on his drawings.
In 1965, Judd created his first stack, an arrangement of identical iron units stretching from floor to ceiling. As he abandoned painting for sculpture in the early 1960s, he wrote the manifesto-like essay “Specific Objects” in 1964. In his essay, Judd found a starting point for a new territory for American art, a simultaneous rejection of residual inherited European artistic values, these values being illusion and represented space, as opposed to real space, he pointed to evidence of this development in the works of an array of artists active in New York at the time, including H. C. Westermann, Lucas Samaras, John Chamberlain, Jasper Johns, Dan Flavin, George Earl Ortman and Lee Bontecou; the works that Judd had fabricated inhabited a space not comfortably classifiable as either painting or sculpture and in fact he refused to call them sculpture, pointing out that they were not sculpted but made by small fabricators using industrial processes. That the categorical identity of such objects was itself in question, that they avoided easy association with well-worn and over-familiar conventions, was a part of their value for Judd.
He displayed two pieces in the seminal 1966 exhibit, "Primary Structures" at the Jewish Museum in New York where, during a panel discussion of the work, he challenged Mark di Suvero's assertion that real artists make their own art. He replied. In 1968, the Whitney Museum of American Art staged a retrospective of his work which included none of his early paintings. In 1968, Judd bought a five-story building in New York that allowed him to start placing his work in a more permanent manner than was possible in gallery or museum shows; this would lead him to push for permanent installations for his work and that of others, as he believed that temporary exhibitions, being designed by curators for the public, placed the art itself in the background degrading it due to incompetency or incomprehension. This would become a major preoccupation as the idea of permanent installation grew in importance and his distaste for the art wor
Sarah L. Thornton is a writer and sociologist of culture. Thornton has authored three books and many articles about artists, the art market and design, the history of music technology, dance clubs, cultural hierarchies and ethnographic research methods. Thornton was born in Canada, she lived in London, for 25 years. She now resides in San Francisco, CA, her education comprises a BA in the History of Art from Concordia University, a PhD in the Sociology of Culture from Strathclyde University, Glasgow. Her academic posts have included a full-time lecturership at the University of Sussex, a period as Visiting Research Fellow at Goldsmiths, University of London, she worked as a brand planner in a London advertising agency. She was the chief writer about contemporary art for The Economist, she has written for publications including The Sunday Times Magazine, The Art Newspaper, Artforum.com, The New Yorker, The Telegraph, The Guardian, The New Statesman. In Club Cultures: Music and Subcultural Capital, Thornton examines the shift from live to recorded music for public dancing and the resistance to recording technology's enculturation of the "authentic," valued cultural form.
The book analyzes the dynamics of "hipness," critiquing Pierre Bourdieu's theory of cultural capital with her own formulation of "subcultural capital." The study responds to earlier works such as Dick Hebdige's 1979 book Subculture: The Meaning of Style. It does not see media as a reflection of social groups, but as integral to their formation. Contrary to youth subcultural ideologies, "subcultures" do not germinate from a seed and grow by force of their own energy into mysterious ‘movements’ only to be belatedly digested by the media. Rather and other culture industries are there and effective right from the start, they are central to the process of subcultural formation. The book is described by Stuart Hall and Tony Jefferson as "theoretically innovative" and "conceptually adventurous"; the New York Times' Karen Rosenberg said that Seven Days in the Art World "was reported and written in a heated market, but it is poised to endure as a work of sociology... pushes her well-chosen subjects to explore the questions ‘What is an artist?’ and ‘What makes a work of art great?’"In the UK, Ben Lewis wrote in The Sunday Times that Seven Days was "a Robert Altmanesque panorama of...the most important cultural phenomenon of the last ten years".
While Peter Aspden argued in the Financial Times that " does well to resist the temptation to draw any glib, overarching conclusions. There is more than enough in her rigorous, precise reportage… for the reader to make his or her own connections."András Szántó reviewed Seven Days in the Art World: "Underneath glossy surface lurks a sociologist's concern for institutional narratives as well as the ethnographer's conviction that entire social structures can be apprehended in frivolous patterns of speech or dress." Thornton's book 33 Artists in 3 Acts looks at the lives and work of figures "from all over the art ecosystem, from the market-driven mogul to the profoundly intellectual performance artist to the impish prankster" The central question guiding the book is: What defines an artist in the 21st century? Thornton received "a range of answers that will startle art-world insiders." Jackie Wullshlager of the Financial Times opined that Thornton is "skillfully nuanced" and "elevates gossip to sociology, writing with verve and authenticity."33 Artists in 3 Acts received praise for its academic approach and "attention to detail and illustration of subtleties that bring her interviewees to life....
Flair for creating clear structures offer readers manageable points of access... without compromising on quality or content, or sounding pretentious." At The Economist, Thornton penned investigative and analytical articles about the inner workings of the contemporary art market. Her writing explored issues such as the value of art, the role of museum validation and branding, the impact of gender on auction prices. In 2010, she wrote an article about the Damien Hirst auction, "Beautiful Inside My Head Forever", which took place on the evening that Lehman Brothers went bankrupt in 2008; the article explained. Thornton's articles have begun to shift focus onto the tech world of Silicon Valley. For Cultured Magazine, she has published profiles on various leaders in tech including Mike Krieger, Evan Williams, Ivy Ross. On 26 July 2011, Thornton won a historic libel and malicious falsehood victory against Lynn Barber and The Daily Telegraph. All three of the Telegraph′s attempts to appeal were denied.
Thornton, Sarah. Club Cultures: Music and Subcultural Capital. Wesleyan. ISBN 978-0819562975. Thornton, Sarah. Seven Days in the Art World. W. W. Norton & Company. ISBN 978-0393337129. Thornton, Sarah. 33 Artists in 3 Acts. W. W. Norton & Company. ISBN 978-0393351675. Thornton, Sarah; the Subcultures Reader. London, New York: Routledge. ISBN 9780415127288. Thornton, Sarah L.. "Rethinking'moral panic' for multi-mediated social worlds". British Journal of Sociology. 46: 559–574. Doi:10.2307/591571. JSTOR 591
Robert Smithson was an American artist who used photography in relation to sculpture and land art. Smithson was born in Passaic, New Jersey and early on lived in Rutherford. In Rutherford, William Carlos Williams was Smithson's pediatrician; when Smithson was nine his family moved to the Allwood section of Clifton. He studied painting and drawing in New York City at the Art Students League of New York from 1955 to 1956 and briefly at the Brooklyn Museum School, his early exhibited artworks were collage works influenced by "homoerotic drawings and clippings from beefcake magazines", science fiction, early Pop Art. He identified himself as a painter during this time, but after a three-year rest from the art world, Smithson emerged in 1964 as a proponent of the emerging minimalist movement, his new work abandoned the preoccupation with the body, common in his earlier work. Instead he began to use glass sheet and neon lighting tubes to explore visual refraction and mirroring, in particular the sculpture Enantiomorphic Chambers.
Crystalline structures and the concept of entropy became of particular interest to him, informed a number of sculptures completed during this period, including Alogon 2. In Smithson's eyes entropy was the second law of thermodynamics, which exploits the range of energy by telling us that energy is easier lost than obtained, he said. Smithson used the idea of entropy to explore ideas of decay and renewal and order, non-sites and earthworks, trying to find equilibrium between these opposites, his ideas on entropy branched out into culture, "the urban sprawl and the infinite number of housing developments of the post war boom have contributed to the architect of entropy". Smithson did not see entropy as a disadvantage. Smithson became affiliated with artists who were identified with the minimalist or Primary Structures movement, such as Nancy Holt, Robert Morris and Sol LeWitt; as a writer, Smithson was interested in applying mathematical impersonality to art that he outlined in essays and reviews for Arts Magazine and Artforum and for a period was better known as a critic than as an artist.
Some of Smithson's writings recovered 18th- and 19th-century conceptions of landscape architecture which influenced the pivotal earthwork explorations which characterized his work. He joined the Dwan Gallery, whose owner Virginia Dwan was an enthusiastic supporter of his work. In 1967 Smithson began exploring industrial areas around New Jersey and was fascinated by the sight of dump trucks excavating tons of earth and rock that he described in an essay as the equivalents of the monuments of antiquity; this resulted in the series of'non-sites' in which earth and rocks collected from a specific area are installed in the gallery as sculptures combined with mirrors or glass. In September 1968, Smithson published the essay "A Sedimentation of the Mind: Earth Projects" in Artforum that promoted the work of the first wave of land art artists, in 1969 he began producing land art pieces to further explore concepts gained from his readings of William S. Burroughs, J. G. Ballard, George Kubler; as well as works of art, Smithson produced a good deal of theoretical and critical writing, including the 2D paper work A Heap of Language, which sought to show how writing might become an artwork.
In his essay "Incidents of Mirror-Travel in the Yucatan" Smithson documents a series of temporary sculptures made with mirrors at particular locations around the Yucatan peninsula. Part travelogue, part critical rumination, the article highlights Smithson's concern with the temporal as a cornerstone of his work. Smithson's interest in the temporal is explored in his writings in part through the recovery of the ideas of the picturesque, his essay "Frederick Law Olmsted and the Dialectical Landscape" was written in 1973 after Smithson had seen an exhibition curated by Elizabeth Barlow Rogers at the Whitney Museum entitled "Frederick Law Olmsted's New York" as the cultural and temporal context for the creation of his late-19th-century design for Central Park. In examining the photographs of the land set aside to become Central Park, Smithson saw the barren landscape, degraded by humans before Olmsted constructed the complex'naturalistic' landscape, viscerally apparent to New Yorkers in the 1970s.
Smithson was interested in challenging the prevalent conception of Central Park as an outdated 19th-century Picturesque aesthetic in landscape architecture that had a static relationship within the continuously evolving urban fabric of New York City. In studying the writings of 18th- and 19th-century Picturesque treatise writers Gilpin, Price and Whately, Smithson recovers issues of site specificity and human intervention as dialectic landscape layers, experiential multiplicity, the value of deformations manifest in the Picturesque landscape. Smithson further implies in this essay that what distinguishes the Picturesque is that it is based on real land For Smithson, a park exists as "a process of ongoing relationships existing in a physical region" Smithson was interested in Central Park as a landscape which by the 1970s had weathered and grown as Olmsted's creation, but was layered with new evidence of human intervention. Now the Ramble has grown up into an urban jungle, lurking in its thickets are "hoods, hobos and homosexuals," and other estranged creatures of the city….
Walking east, I passed graffiti on boulders… On the base of the Obelisk along with the hieroglyphs there are graffiti. …In the spillway that pours out
Minimalism (visual arts)
Minimalism describes movements in various forms of art and design visual art and music, where the work is set out to expose the essence, essentials or identity of a subject through eliminating all non-essential forms, features or concepts. As a specific movement in the arts it is identified with developments in post–World War II Western Art, most with American visual arts in the 1960s and early 1970s. Prominent artists associated with this movement include Ad Reinhardt, Tony Smith, Donald Judd, John McCracken, Agnes Martin, Dan Flavin, Robert Morris, Larry Bell, Anne Truitt, Yves Klein and Frank Stella. Artists themselves have sometimes reacted against the label due to the negative implication of the work being simplistic. Minimalism is interpreted as a reaction against Abstract expressionism and a bridge to Postminimal art practices. Minimalism in visual art referred to as "minimal art", literalist art and ABC Art emerged in New York in the early 1960s. Minimal art appeared in New York in the 60s as new and older artists moved toward geometric abstraction.
Judd's sculpture was showcased in 1964 at the Green Gallery in Manhattan as were Flavin's first fluorescent light works, while other leading Manhattan galleries like the Leo Castelli Gallery and the Pace Gallery began to showcase artists focused on geometric abstraction. In addition there were two seminal and influential museum exhibitions: Primary Structures: Younger American and British Sculpture' shown from April 27 - June 12, 1966 at the Jewish Museum in New York, organized by the museum's Curator of Painting and Sculpture, Kynaston McShine and Systemic Painting, at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum curated by Lawrence Alloway in 1966 that showcased Geometric abstraction in the American art world via Shaped canvas, Color Field, Hard-edge painting. In the wake of those exhibitions and a few others the art movement called. Jean Metzinger, following the Succès de scandale created from the Cubist showing at the 1911 Salon des Indépendants, in an interview with Cyril Berger published in Paris-Journal 29 May 1911, stated: We cubists have only done our duty by creating a new rhythm for the benefit of humanity.
Others will come after us. What will they find? That is the tremendous secret of the future. Who knows if someday, a great painter, looking with scorn on the brutal game of supposed colorists and taking the seven colors back to the primordial white unity that encompasses them all, will not exhibit white canvases, with nothing nothing on them. Metzinger's audacious prediction that artists would take abstraction to its logical conclusion by vacating representational subject matter and returning to what Metzinger calls the "primordial white unity", a "completely white canvas" would be realized two years later; the writer of a satirical manifesto Francis Picabia, in a publication entitled Evolution de l'art: Vers l'amorphisme, in Les Hommes du Jour, may have had Metzinger's vision in mind when the author justified amorphism's blank canvases by claiming'light is enough for us'. With perspective, writes art historian Jeffery S. Weiss, "Vers Amorphisme may be gibberish, but it was enough of a foundational language to anticipate the extreme reductivist implications of non-objectivity".
Monochrome painting was initiated at the first Incoherent arts' exhibition in 1882 in Paris, with a black painting by poet Paul Bilhaud entitled "Combat de Nègres dans un tunnel". In the subsequent exhibitions of the Incoherent arts the writer Alphonse Allais proposed seven other monochrome paintings, such as "Première communion de jeunes filles chlorotiques par un temps de neige", or "Récolte de la tomate par des cardinaux apoplectiques au bord de la Mer Rouge". However, this kind of activity bears more similarity to 20th century Dada, or Neo-Dada, the works of the Fluxus group of the 1960s, than to 20th century monochrome painting since Malevich. In a broad and general sense, one finds European roots of minimalism in the geometric abstractions of painters associated with the Bauhaus, in the works of Kazimir Malevich, Piet Mondrian and other artists associated with the De Stijl movement, the Russian Constructivist movement, in the work of the Romanian sculptor Constantin Brâncuși. Minimal art is inspired in part by the paintings of Barnett Newman, Ad Reinhardt, Josef Albers, the works of artists as diverse as Pablo Picasso, Marcel Duchamp, Giorgio Morandi, others.
Minimalism was a reaction against the painterly subjectivity of Abstract Expressionism, dominant in the New York School during the 1940s and 1950s. The wide range of possibilities of interpretation of monochrome paintings is arguably why the monochrome is so engaging to so many artists and writers. Although the monochrome has never become dominant and few artists have committed themselves to it, it has never gone away, it reappears as though a spectre haunting high modernism, or as a symbol of it, appearing during times of aesthetic and sociopolitical upheavals. In France between 1947 and 1948, Yves Klein conceived his Monotone Symphony that consisted of a single 20-minute sustained chord follo
New York City
The City of New York called either New York City or New York, is the most populous city in the United States. With an estimated 2017 population of 8,622,698 distributed over a land area of about 302.6 square miles, New York is the most densely populated major city in the United States. Located at the southern tip of the state of New York, the city is the center of the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the world by urban landmass and one of the world's most populous megacities, with an estimated 20,320,876 people in its 2017 Metropolitan Statistical Area and 23,876,155 residents in its Combined Statistical Area. A global power city, New York City has been described as the cultural and media capital of the world, exerts a significant impact upon commerce, research, education, tourism, art and sports; the city's fast pace has inspired the term New York minute. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplomacy.
Situated on one of the world's largest natural harbors, New York City consists of five boroughs, each of, a separate county of the State of New York. The five boroughs – Brooklyn, Manhattan, The Bronx, Staten Island – were consolidated into a single city in 1898; the city and its metropolitan area constitute the premier gateway for legal immigration to the United States. As many as 800 languages are spoken in New York, making it the most linguistically diverse city in the world. New York City is home to more than 3.2 million residents born outside the United States, the largest foreign-born population of any city in the world. In 2017, the New York metropolitan area produced a gross metropolitan product of US$1.73 trillion. If greater New York City were a sovereign state, it would have the 12th highest GDP in the world. New York is home to the highest number of billionaires of any city in the world. New York City traces its origins to a trading post founded by colonists from the Dutch Republic in 1624 on Lower Manhattan.
The city and its surroundings came under English control in 1664 and were renamed New York after King Charles II of England granted the lands to his brother, the Duke of York. New York served as the capital of the United States from 1785 until 1790, it has been the country's largest city since 1790. The Statue of Liberty greeted millions of immigrants as they came to the U. S. by ship in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and is an international symbol of the U. S. and its ideals of liberty and peace. In the 21st century, New York has emerged as a global node of creativity and entrepreneurship, social tolerance, environmental sustainability, as a symbol of freedom and cultural diversity. Many districts and landmarks in New York City are well known, with the city having three of the world's ten most visited tourist attractions in 2013 and receiving a record 62.8 million tourists in 2017. Several sources have ranked New York the most photographed city in the world. Times Square, iconic as the world's "heart" and its "Crossroads", is the brightly illuminated hub of the Broadway Theater District, one of the world's busiest pedestrian intersections, a major center of the world's entertainment industry.
The names of many of the city's landmarks and parks are known around the world. Manhattan's real estate market is among the most expensive in the world. New York is home to the largest ethnic Chinese population outside of Asia, with multiple signature Chinatowns developing across the city. Providing continuous 24/7 service, the New York City Subway is the largest single-operator rapid transit system worldwide, with 472 rail stations. Over 120 colleges and universities are located in New York City, including Columbia University, New York University, Rockefeller University, which have been ranked among the top universities in the world. Anchored by Wall Street in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan, New York has been called both the most economically powerful city and the leading financial center of the world, the city is home to the world's two largest stock exchanges by total market capitalization, the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. In 1664, the city was named in honor of the Duke of York.
James's older brother, King Charles II, had appointed the Duke proprietor of the former territory of New Netherland, including the city of New Amsterdam, which England had seized from the Dutch. During the Wisconsinan glaciation, 75,000 to 11,000 years ago, the New York City region was situated at the edge of a large ice sheet over 1,000 feet in depth; the erosive forward movement of the ice contributed to the separation of what is now Long Island and Staten Island. That action left bedrock at a shallow depth, providing a solid foundation for most of Manhattan's skyscrapers. In the precolonial era, the area of present-day New York City was inhabited by Algonquian Native Americans, including the Lenape, whose homeland, known as Lenapehoking, included Staten Island; the first documented visit into New York Harbor by a European was in 1524 by Giovanni da Verrazzano, a Florentine explorer in the service of the French crown. He named it Nouvelle Angoulême. A Spanish expedition led by captain Estêvão Gomes, a Portuguese sailing for Emperor Charles V, arrived in New York Harbor in January 1525 and charted the mouth of the Hudson River, which he named Río de San Antonio.
The Padrón Rea