St. Vartan Cathedral, Kips Bay, NYC

From a distance this cathedral, St. Vartan Cathedral of the Eastern Diocese of the Armenian Church in America, doesn’t look mid-century. That is because it is based on an ancient cathedral from the early A.D.s in Armenia, most likely this one, although sources vary. It’s only as you get closer and notice the lack of major windows and the abstract look of the stained glass, as well as some modern relief design on the exterior.

The cathedral was consecrated in 1968 and was designed by Steinmann, Cain and White, one of the many successor firms to the legendary firm of McKim, Mead and White, with consultation from Edouard Utudjian, an Armenian architect. The Cathedral sits on Second Avenue between East 34th and 35th Streets, close by the entrance to the Midtown Tunnel.

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