“A View of the World from 9th Avenue,” Reinterpreted From a Brooklyn Perspective


When I was in the fourth grade, my family took a trip to New York City over spring break, and my Mom bought a mug with a picture of Saul Steinberg’s “View of the World from 9th Avenue,” made famous by this 1976 cover of The New Yorker, on it. I would study the buildings Steinberg drew lining 10th Avenue and the tiny people inhabiting the streets as I drank orange juice at our kitchen table, wondering if I’d ever have the guts to move here one day. That picture, to me and a whole lot of other people, was a clear sign of how New Yorkers saw the world&#8212it’s pretty small when you’re at the center of it.

It was only a matter of time, then, that someone would shift Steinberg’s telescopic lens across the East River and reinterpret the scene from a Brooklynite’s point of view. The designers at newly launched Brooklyn Poster (whose parent company BlankSlate has a working relationship with Brooklyn Mag, for complete disclosure) picture Manhattan as small and drab, heh, while packing Kings County with vibrant signs of life. McCarren Park is in there. So is the Barclays Center, Coney Island, the Williamsburg Savings Bank, the Brooklyn Public Library… It’s a “Where’s Waldo” of borough landmarks. Even with swaths of the cityscape missing (Kensington, anyone? Flatbush? Etc.), the gist of it is made clear: We’re living at the new center of the universe. Take a closer look at Brooklyn Poster’s illustration here.


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