“Legendary” is almost too subtle a word to describe New York’s Chelsea Hotel. While it was still open to guests, some of the most famous artists in the world hung their hats for a time in the hotel. Bob Dylan wrote songs there, Arthur C. Clarke wrote “2001: A Space Odyssey” there, Sid Vicious allegedly killed girlfriend Nancy Spungen there in a bathroom, and Jack Kerouac wrote “On the Road” there.
Photographer Linda Troeller lived in the Chelsea Hotel for some 20 years. During that time, she would collect a treasure trove of memories. She lived across the hall from Beat poet Herbert Huncke, who would invite her to his room to see his latest poetry “scrawled on the fridge.” Troeller also remembers Alexander McQueen coming to her room and taking her through the hotel, where she was “shooting his vision of texture, space, and sex.” Troller reveals many of these memories and impressions in her book, “Living in the Chelsea Hotel” (Schiffer Publishing, 2015). The book takes us on a tour of the narrow staircases and walls covered in art and into the rooms of the various creative characters who lived there, providing us with a lasting document of, and one last glimpse inside, the hotel’s storied halls.
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