I was in the neighborhood with a buddy, and I noticed a funky shack hidden away behind a container on the docks that I had never noticed before.
I strolled inside (the door was open) and the place was filled with nautical models, wood carvings, signs and statues in various states of completion. No one was around, so I snapped a few shots, because most of the pieces were absolutely gorgeous. The whole entire place had a 19th Century vibe to it, with not a modern tool in site.
After a few minutes, a gentleman walked in, greeted me, and asked what I was doing. I told him snapping pictures. He explained to me that he was a wood carver, and that he made pieces and did repairs for the ships at the South Street Seaport Museum. We chatted for a while, and he showed me some of his finished pieces, which were fantastic. A wooden book, with a carvin of poppies and marijuana leaves, was something he said "He thought I would like." Jeez, do I look that bad?
He showed me a miniature steam engine, that powered a miniature table saw that he built. A half finished figurehead of a woman for the prow of a ship. A sign carved in Latin. Overall, I was blown away to stumble onto this craftsman playing a fully Victorian trade in the shadows of Wall St. sky scrapers. His name is Sal Polisi, and I’ll definitely be back for another visit soon.
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