The peripatetic Richard Porter has returned from a fact finding cultural tour of New York and Berlin.

He reports that the great icons of New York City – such  as the Empire State, Chrysler and Flatiron buildings- have lost none of their power to impress.

New icons have appeared; the vast new World Trade Center Subway Station, and the brand new Second Ave Subway Station at 96th St, the line finally open after decades of indecision.This new station is adorned by  artist Chuck Close’s image of Lou Reed.

The Metropolitan Museum, Frick Collection  and  Museum of Natural History were scrutinised  and appreciated in all their splendour. RP could also  be seen in Harlem, the Bronx, Brooklyn & Morningside Heights, as well as in the Skylight Diner on 9th Ave.

In Berlin, Richard inspected work on the reconstruction of the Berlin Schloss  (Palace) which was demolished by the Soviets in 1950, and now about to resume its rightful place at the heart of a unified city.

In Dresden, the rebuilt Frauenkirche proved a very emotional experience. The great baroque  city is

being systematically scoured of communist  era architecture, and the original street  plan is being re-established.

As everyone knows, the stature of a city  is determined by its commitment to public transport, and both New York and Berlin have subways par excellence. One can now be whisked around the re-opened Berlin Ringbahn and its 27 stations in 75 minutes.

Our esteemed tutor, returns re-invigorated to resume his Tuesday and Thursday classes at our Glorious Art School, still the world’s best.

Richard is also taking a Life Drawing Holiday Class, July 10th to 14th, at the Rocks.