"Sherill Tippins offers an insightful cutaway view of the architecture of the 20th century artistic sensibility itself. -- Newsday
THE NEXT BEST THING TO HAVING A ROOM KEY TO THE CHELSEA HOTEL DURING EACH OF ITS FAMOUS -- AND INFAMOUS -- DECADES. Winner of the Marfield Prize, National Award for Arts Writing The Chelsea Hotel, since its founding by a visionary French architect in 1884, has been an icon of American invention: a cultural dynamo and haven for the counterculture, all in one astonishing building. Sherill Tippins, author of the acclaimed February House, delivers a masterful and endlessly entertaining history of the Chelsea and of the successive generations of artists who have cohabited and created there, among them John Sloan, Edgar Lee Masters, Thomas Wolfe, Dylan Thomas, Arthur Miller, Allen Ginsberg, Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin, Leonard Cohen, Patti Smith, Robert Mapplethorpe, Andy Warhol, Sam Shepard, Sid Vicious, and Dee Dee Ramone. Now as legendary as the artists it has housed and the countless collaborations it has sparked, the Chelsea has always stood as a mystery as well: Why and how did this hotel become the largest and longest-lived artists' community in the known world? Inside the Dream Palace is the intimate and definitive story.
"An impossible order for any writer: Get the Chelsea's "Inside the Dream Palace tells the story of the romance down on paper and try to keep up with remarkable building...but it does something more, Patti Smith and Joni Mitchell and Arthur Miller. But presenting an oft-overlooked current of American Sherill Tippins's history does a vivid job of taking you utopianism, one that was urban, creative and up into those seedy, splendid hallways, now gone surprisingly long-lived." forever. -- New York Magazine -- Los Angeles Times
"Deliciously readable...There's something about the allure of strange bedfellows that is simply irresistible." -- New York Times Winner of the LAMBDA Literary Award for Biography A New-York Historical Society Book Prize Nominee In this captivating book, Sherill Tippins brings to life the story of what was possibly the most fertile and improbable live-in salon of the twentieth century. Known as February House, its residents included, among others, Carson McCullers, W. H. Auden, Paul Bowles, and the famed burlesque performer Gypsy Rose Lee. This ramshackle Brooklyn brownstone was host to an explosion of creativity, an extraordinary experiment in communal living, and a nonstop yearlong party fueled by the appetites of youth. Here these burgeoning talents composed many of their most famous, iconic literary works while experiencing together a crucial historical moment -- America on the threshold of World War II.
"A day-by-day portrait of what became a messy, "If you love literary memoirs with an eye for the exciting, and extraordinary whirlwind of artistic preposterous, try February House by Sherill Tippins; creation...Tippins reconstructs the scene right on the eve of the Second World War, an old New down to the overflowing ashtrays." York brownstone is filled with a disparate and dotty collection of young geniuses, and masterpieces flow. Wonderful! --Time Out New York --New Statesman