BEFORE AND AFTER PHOTOS: A Massive Spring Cleanup At The National Arts Club


Photo: Courtesy DNAinfo

Earlier today, we told you the sordid tale of O. Aldon James, the dethroned president of the National Arts Club who nearly drove the venerable institution into the ground through financial mismanagment, shady apartment rentals, and an overall inability to keep the place clean.Oh, and he may have been responsible for the death of over 50 exotic finches in Gramercy Park this spring.

Now, has been kind enough to share before-and-after photos of the massive cleanup effort that has taken place since James agreed to step down in March.

It’s not Martha Stewart’s kitchen, but at least the place has been restored to some of the former glory deserving of its impressive façade.

Many of the “before” photos were taken by Miguel Serrano, a doorman at the NAC who was fired by James and re-hired by the board; and Luis Alfredo Garcia, a former employee who filed a New York State labour complaint against James after leaving in 2009, according to a source. Amy Zimmer, a news editor at DNAinfo, took the “after” pictures.

The National Arts Club is located in a stunning Gothic Revival brownstone overlooking Gramercy Park

BEFORE: The front desk, piled with papers and books

BEFORE: O. Aldon James' office was loaded with papers, a cowboy hat and an old blowup globe

AFTER: The same office, after the cleanup

BEFORE: The boardroom of the National Arts Club in 2009

AFTER: The boardroom, today

BEFORE: Mountains of junk filled the presidential office

AFTER: Great views of Gramercy Park from the empty presidential office

BEFORE: A damaged ceiling in the art storage room

BEFORE: An apartment in the National Arts Club, prior to cleanup

AFTER: A bare apartment in the club

AFTER: A bookshelf-lined apartment sits empty

AFTER: Many of the apartments appear damaged in photos

AFTER: Another apartment, post cleanup

AFTER: The fireplace in this apartment is now visible

AFTER: Much of the debris was carted out in dumpsters

AFTER: Artwork is still being appraised. This painting has a gash; the frame is worth an estimated $5,000

Source: DNAinfo

BEFORE: There's still a ways to go in the club library

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