Cony Island Architecture | Franck Bohbot
New Yorkers take the subway to the beach. The F or the Q train pulls into Stillwell Avenue and when the doors open you smell the ocean. The Lenape Indians called this place “the land with no shadows”. The Dutch hunted rabbits “konijn” and called it Coney Island. In 1901 everyone’s favorite ride was a voyage to a papier-mâché moon so popular they called the place Luna Park. . On Surf Avenue is the original Nathan’s where the hot dog was invented in 1916. Coney Island is one of our myths, the landscape of our carnival.
Franck Bohbot captures a Luna Park in transition, caught between the long seediness of its past, fading like theice cream pasteboards, and perhaps a glimpse of the American future, the privatized, sanitized austerity of a modern melancholia.
And yet, as these photographs show, Coney Island may still surprise. In its lurid candy-colored glazes a fantasy still beckons. The dream has lost its fever, but there is no sign of waking up.