SFUAD Contributing Faculty Member Helen Molanphy’s Memoir Published by Norton
Over P.J. Clarke’s Bar details the lives of Molanphy’s paternal family, the Clarkes, and their connection to Manhattan’s famous watering hole
For Immediate Release
Santa Fe, N.M.—November 26, 2012— Over P.J. Clarke’s Bar: Tales from New York City’s Famous Saloon, a memoir by Santa Fe University of Art and Design (SFUAD) contributing faculty member Helen Molanphy (nee Clarke), was published this month by Skyhorse Publishing/W. W. Norton & Company. The book details the lives of Molanphy’s paternal family growing up in Manhattan, where her grand-uncle owned P.J. Clarke’s, a bar popular with generations of New Yorkers — from working-class folks to celebrities.
“I’ve wanted to write this memoir for years, and I felt this was the right time to convey the story of Clarke’s saloon, which has so much history behind it,” said Molanphy, who teaches liberal arts at SFUAD. “My grand-uncle Paddy founded the saloon in 1912, and it was at first a neighborhood place. In 1944, the saloon served as the inspiration for Nat’s Bar in the film Lost Weekend, and word got out that Clarke’s was becoming a New York City landmark.”
The New York Times has called P. J. Clarke’s “the Vatican of saloons” because it has been a favorite destination for the likes of Frank Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe, Jacqueline Kennedy, Richard Harris and Nat King Cole, as well as many athletes from the New York Giants and New York Yankees. A recent article in the New York Post says that Molanphy’s memoir “reveals the old-fashioned bar’s glitzy, gritty history.”
Once called the “little bar that could” because it survived Prohibition, New York East Side development, and bankruptcy, P.J. Clarke’s now has six locations around the United States and one in São Paulo, Brazil.
Molanphy earned her doctorate in Humanities from the University of Texas. She is teaching a class called “REEL identity—Race, Class, and Gender” this Fall semester at SFUAD.
About Santa Fe University of Art and Design
Santa Fe University of Art and Design is an accredited institution located in Santa Fe, New Mexico, one of the world’s leading centers for art and design. The university offers degrees in arts management, contemporary music, creative writing, digital arts, graphic design, moving image arts (filmmaking and video production), performing arts, photography and studio art. Faculty members are practicing artists who teach students in small groups, following a unique interdisciplinary curriculum that combines hands-on experience with core theory and prepares graduates to become well-rounded, creative, problem-solving professionals. As a Laureate International Universities Center of Excellence in Art, Architecture and Design, the university boasts an international student body and opportunities to study abroad, encouraging students to develop a global perspective on the arts. Santa Fe University of Art and Design is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association, www.ncahlc.org.