The Double Height Studio


While many apartments in Manhattan have high ceilings, there are a small number that push up even further, with one or two double-height rooms and, frequently, a mezzanine that overlooks their open volume.  These large apartments were built as “studios” for New York artists and those associated with them.

As architecture, they reference Paris, whose artists and art market dominated the latter decades of the 19thcentury.  “Studio” apartments were first developed in Greenwich Village after the Civil War, when New York, still looking to Europe, was beginning to come together as an art center.  But the more highly evolved examples were built uptown, after 1900.  Replacing Paris as the primary art center after World War II, New York inspired its own much more common housing type, the artist’s “loft”, located Downtown.

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Tenth Street Studios, 51 West 10th Street, from the collection of the American Institute of Architects and the American Architectural Foundation, Wikimedia Commons