For decades the hulking former bank building at 190 Bowery in downtown Manhattan was stuck stubbornly sometime in the mid-1970s, covered in graffiti and oblivious to the remodeling happening around it. Recently, it was sold to a real-estate developer for $55 million, and soon it will become condos or some shit. Here's your last look inside.
Photographer Jay Maisel bought the 72-room building for $102,000 in 1966 and used it chiefly as a home for himself and his family. For much of that time, you'd be forgiven for assuming it was abandoned: there are few signs of life from inside, people rarely come in and out, and the accessible regions of its exterior walls are covered in a perpetually changing mosaic of wheat-pasted and spray-painted art.
Bucky Turco—ANIMAL New York editor-in-chief, full-time urban marauder, and my former boss—snuck into 190 Bowery on three separate occasions recently to shoot the below video and a slew of still photographs, documenting the old 190 Bowery before it is made over in the image of the cocktail bars and headquarters for poorly copyedited online gossip rags that surround it.