joseph cornell’s old house

37-08 utopia parkway

Here’s Joseph Cornell’s old house, 37-08 Utopia Parkway, returned to suburbia – note the door hanging.

(Related: an account of meeting Cornell as a child.)

9 thoughts on “joseph cornell’s old house

  1. I lived next door to Mr. Cornell as a child. He gave one of his pieces to my parents as a gift and after he passed, my parents sold it to John Lennon and Yoko Ono for $1,000, which at the time, was a lot of money to my parents who immigrated to the US from post war Germany. I just visited the Phoenix Art Museum and saw one of his pieces. It brought back so many fond memories of him. 


  2. I never knew Joseph Cornell, but my family did. My mother often cooked for him and did light house cleaning. My sister Fran and Jeanette also did little things around the house for him. My now brother in law used to make the box frames for his art pieces. I am sorry I never met him. His art was simple in material, but beautiful and complex in meaning.

  3. I grew up about one block up the street. My brother used to help Cornell with yard work. I was very lucky to have gotten a private showing of his art when I was about 12, although not quite as lucky as Karin. He was something of an eminence grise for the neighborhood. A very good man, but quite a recluse. No one had any idea as to how important he would become. Thanks for posting this!

  4. Karin Murphy: I think you are the childhood friend that I had who lived next door. Was your father Gary and your brother Eric? Do you remember me?

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  6. Elana, you are correct. My father, Gerhard, Gary for short, my mother, Ida, and my brother, Eric lived at 37-06 Utopia Parkway. I’m trying desperately to put a face to your name. Did you live to the left of us in the beige house? What a small world we live in!

  7. David, did you live on Crocheron Avenue and Utopia Parkway with your mother and brother in the white apartments?

  8. My name is Douglas Breusch. Today (5/26/2024) I am 73. My Grandfather (August Breusch) and my Grandmother (Mildred Breusch) lived at 37-06 Utopia Parkway – next to Joseph Cornell. My Grandfather and my Grandmother lived on the second floor of the house. My Great Uncle (Frank Breusch) and his wife (Theresa Breusch) lived on the first floor – as they were using it as a 2 family house. My Grandfather’s brother (my uncle Frank) married the sister of my Grandfather’s wife. So August Breusch was the brother of Frank Breusch and Mildred Breusch was the sister of Theresa Breusch. The maiden name of Mildred and Theresa was Raaf. My father (Albert Breusch) would play checkers and chess at Joseph’s house with Joseph’s disabled brother Robert. My father was born in 1917 so he was 14 years younger than Joseph Cornell. My Grandfather was born in 1894 so he was 9 years older than Joseph Cornell. My father showed Joseph Cornell how to use a Miter Box so the edges of his shadow boxes would fit together. Joseph gave my father and mother one of his shadow boxes…but my brother and I were small and we were in a small house – they were afraid my brother or I would knock it on the floor and break it – so they gave it back to Joseph.

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