Grace Glueck's carefully selected works, some 41 in all, including Estes' Ansonia (above), succeed in capturing not just the experience but the soul of this great world city. And not only Edward Hopper but others have the talent for fixing on canvas a multilayed fable, a complex pluralistic series of lives and experiences and hopes. From the 1920s through to the 1980s the city was painted by a succession of artists each striving to capture the micro and macro, the sheer scale and ambition of the whole against the diverse fragments of individual lives that made it so. Amongst those 41 works I can find only one that even suggested the presence of the twin towers of the WTC, and this is important.
In the past ten years the myth has grown that the WTC was New York, that 9/11 destroyed something integral and central to the city's identity. New York has always been much more, and will continue to be much more, than the twin towers. You could crash a hundred passenger jets on the city and it would not stop being New York. At the end of the day the memorial at ground zero will be a forgotten and almost irrelevant structure; the true memorial to that event is the entire city itself, its resilience and its people. God bless New York.