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Samuel Morse Cornelius Vanderbilt

Forgotten Delights: The Producers

A Selection of Manhattan's Outdoor Sculpture
A Collection of Essays
By Dianne L. Durante

A celebration of 19 explorers, inventors,
engineers, businessmen and workers
whose thoughts and efforts reshaped
New York, the United States and the world.

Forgotten Delights: The Producers, 168 pages,
including 59 B&W photographs and 3 maps.
8.5 x 5.5" softcover, and a CD with 344 color images of the sculptures.

Book/CD set: $20.

A Memorable Tribute to Productive Ability

John EricssonBe informed, be entertained, impress your friends, find favor with your in-laws. You'll achieve all this by reading and giving as a Christmas gift or stocking-stuffer, Dianne Durante's Forgotten Delights: The Producers, a collection of essays dealing with Manhattan's outdoor sculpture.

The back cover reads: "A celebration of 19 explorers, inventors, engineers, businessmen and workers whose thoughts and efforts reshaped New York, the United States and the world." The book lives up to its blurb. Dr. Durante combines the sensual with the informative to offer fascinating commentary on some of this nation's greatest producers, their work and the statues in New York City that commemorate them and their achievements.

This is no formula guidebook. Dr. Durante's sometimes breezy style frequently evaporates into solemn admiration revealing enraptured enjoyment with her subject. She charms the reader with elegant although brief descriptions of the sitter, his product and the artwork itself. The book is punctuated with poetry ("Sail on, Sail on!"), quotes by famous individuals (Ayn Rand, Henry Hazlitt, Patrick Henry, Booker T. Washington), passages from articles published at the time of commemoration ("Ericsson and the Bureaucrats," The Century Magazine—1879). Throughout, Dr. Durante expertly holds the reader's attention, informing and amusing him simultaneously.

For the visitor, Dianne tells the reader the whereabouts of the artwork, the best time of day/year for viewing it, its date of dedication, medium and size, and provides a map for easy discovery. For the man-worshipper, she offers moving tributes: from Columbus' courage to Samuel F. B. Morse's extraordinary achievement. For both, she discusses pieces that range in style from the standard neo-classicism of the Cornelius Vanderbilt to the uniquely exaggerated Marteleur (metalsmith).

This book will not only please visitors to New York but also those who've lived there many years. It will also be an exhilarating experience for those who've never visited, never plan to, never have had any interest whatsoever in Manhattan. This is so because Forgotten Delights: The Producers is a glorification of the best in man, his productive ability and his triumphs. Highly recommended.

Sylvia Bokor

"As a native New Yorker who loves both sculpture and heroes, I feel like this book was written personally for me. I have probably walked through 90% of the city at one point or another, and have enjoyed most of these works. However, it is easy to get lost in the shuffle of rushing from point A to point B in this city, never taking the time to enjoy the splendid artwork that literally stands right before us. This book makes one want to slow down and be refueled by the accomplishments of both the subject and sculptor.

"I love the methodology of the format in this book. Dianne Durante analyzes the statue, the subject and the context in which the project was proposed and paid for. She also peppers the book with inspirational quotes and a detailed list of further reading recommendations.

"All 19 of these subjects helped to make this a better world, and are now given a proper recognition for their efforts.

"I highly recommend this book, along with the companion CD of photos. I look forward to the rest of the series and hope that both New Yorkers and tourists alike can benefit from this outstanding work."

Robert Begley, Founder and President, New York Heroes Society