It was Macy’s department store on 34th Street in New York City that, in 1874, was the first to decorate their windows with a Christmas theme. Three years prior they had stayed open until midnight on Christmas Eve, creating the first ever ‘midnight madness’. The season has never been the same since.
Each year millions of people visit New York City at Thanksgiving and Christmas when the windows are unveiled to the delight of thousands of adults and children, eagerly waiting to see these magical windows filled with animation and imagination.
The theme of the windows in my painting is ‘Children and Family are the Best Gift’. The windows feature a family on Christmas Eve, trimming the tree and reading a Christmas story; ‘Toy Land’ has the elves checking the ‘Naughty & Nice’ list (there are no names on the ‘Naughty’ side, but you may find yours under ‘Nice’); Christmas Eve sees Santa on his journey; and a family sits around the dining room table where dad is about to carve the Christmas turkey.
The clock is set at 5:40 as adults and children fill the street to look at the windows and do some Christmas shopping. The pretzel and roasted chestnut wagons are parked in front and a member of the military, who has just come home, stops first at Macy’s to get a gift for someone special.
Do you see yourself in the scene? It was my intention to capture the different eras from the late 1950s through to the present day. You will see different styles of clothing on children and adults; everything from the old, knitted, woolens to the modern day attire, complete with cellphones and backpacks. I hope that this print brings you as much happiness and joy as it did me while I was painting it and that it will bring back many fond memories for years to come.