Broken Angel
I am sorry I have not been updating this site but I have been focused for this past year on my mother who has been ailing and on my father’s attempts to save the house from foreclosure.
My mother Cynthia Wood passed away on Saturday January 30th after a year long battle with liver cancer. She had been a breast cancer surviver and had been in remission for 35 years. She was surrounded by her family when she passed. We are planning to have a memorial for her near the house in the spring. Those who are interested in attending should email me at and I will contact you with more information.
Many of you have posted questions about our future plans for the house. At this time Broken Angel’s future is still unknown. A number of legal investigations are currently ongoing regarding the behavior of the developer and the bank. The United Nations has also recently taken an interest in one of the films about the building and my parents fate.
I would like to share with you a little bit about my mother. Those who knew her, knew she was an exciting, eccentric, fun and brilliant creative woman who gave birth to two children and an inspiring building in Brooklyn.
Cynthia and Arthur Wood bought the shell of a building in the Clinton Hill section of Brooklyn in 1979. They spent the next 30 years creating a home which brought mystery, magic and magnificence to a small cul-de-sac in Brooklyn. Cynthia designed stain glass windows out of discarded bottles and helped construct concrete angels in the rafters. Cynthia and the house both appeared in a number of films, television stories and newspaper articles.
Cynthia was the daughter of the movie director Russell Mack and the actress/singer Bobette Mack. Her father directed an number of films including “The Spirit of Notre Dame”.
At the age of 18 she met her husband Arthur Wood when they were both ice skating on dates with other people at New York’s Wollman rink. He said he “looked into her eyes and it was love at first sight”. They were together for 55 years. He claims that she tricked him into marrying her. After 5 years of dating she told him she had some good news and some bad news for him. When he asked for the bad news she told him her parents were moving to California. To keep her in NY he proposed on the spot. She then told him the good news “that she was not planning to go with them”.
The idea for the building Broken Angel was born from a romantic stroll the couple took through Staten Island. Arthur and Cynthia found a figurine of an angel lying broken and discarded in the gutter. He took it home with them and rebuilt it for her, reconfiguring it so that it was “better than the original”. A little while after that when they found the building that would become their home and life’s work they were reminded of that angel and incorporated that same creativity into rebuilding the structure. They named it “Broken Angel” and hoped to resurrect it with as much success.
The building became the backdrop for the movie “Dave Chappelle’s Block party” in 2004. Cynthia with her purple hair and dynamic energy became an eccentric charismatic figure in the film and even appears in the movie poster.
In 2006 a small fire at the house brought it to the attention of the Department of Buildings. The Woods were forced to vacate and were even arrested when they refused to leave the premises. The building department threatened to tear down their home andit was saved for a time by a collaboration with a local developer who wanted to turn the building into condominiums and an artists space. Unfortunately, due to a number of legal complications the work remains uncompleted and my parents spent her last year together trying to fight foreclosure on the house.
Cynthia Wood is survived by her husband Arthur Wood, her daughter Elizabeth and her son Christopher. She was grandmother to 4 children; Sebastian, Tabatha, Sabrina and Emma.Hopefully her creative legacy will continue to survive bringing a little bit of magic to the Brooklyn skyline.

I am Christopher Wood, son of Arthur (age 75)and Cindy Wood (age 65) the owners and creators of Broken Angel, . The New York City Building department is attempting to remove my parents from their home of 30 years, unless we immediatly get an architect or engineer to bring the building to NYC codes. We do not have the money to do this. If there is anyone out there who is qualified and willing to work Pro Bono we desperately need the help, contributions are also welcome. You can contact my father. Arthur Wood
4 Downing St, Brooklyn, NY 11238. Also we appeal to David Chappelle and Michel Gondry.Our home became the backdrop for your wonderful concert film, please help us to save it now.

(update)My parents, Arthur and Cynthia Wood have been living in fear of the building department after a threat this week to throw them out on to the street without even their family possessions or artwork, and destroy their home of 30 years "Broken Angel". Last night someone placed a broken angel statue in front of my parent’s door at 4 Downing Street. Thank you to the anyonomus donor, it meant the world to me and my parents as it gave us a spark of hope.
Many of you wonder what the hell my parents are doing with that building. They always were building an outline of a dream, a building that was different from the usual architecture of today. They did this while never having enough money to complete their dream. But that didn't stop them for using found or discarded objects that we throw away ever day like the glass bottles that they used to create a stained glass windows. This is the interior and exterior of Broken Angel. My name is Christopher Wood, I have worked for B&H Art in Architecture (web site here for the past 4 years. I am a stone carver and have restored such landmarks such as the Cloisters Museum , Metropolitan Museum of Art , and Grace Church in Manhattan.
My parents and I would love to give back to the community of Brooklyn and turn Broken Angel into a nonprofit foundation for music and the arts which would include a school and museum. There are also complete building plans drawn up by my father in which the first page can viewed at But we need help from you, the residents of New York City.
All of your comments and ideas are welcome

Donations can be sent to Arthur Wood at
4 Downing street Brooklyn, New York 11238
I am at work on a web site with friends of Broken Angel to accept paypal donations

Update Broken Angel 11/13/06 please post

The building Broken Angel is a unique melding of art and architecture designed by my father Arthur Wood, and located in the Clinton Hill section of Brooklyn. The original building was bought at a city auction in 1979, and major construction was completed in 2002. On 10/10/06 a structure at the top of Broken Angel caught fire. Thanks to the quick action of the New York City fire department no one was harmed, and only minimal damage was done to the building. Unfortunately the fire brought the attention of the department of buildings (DOB) who vacated my parents, the owners and guardians of Broken Angel. My family is currently working with the architecture firm, Jordan Parnass Digital Architecture, to bring the building to code, however we are still being threatened with demolition by the DOB. On Wednesday 11/15/06 the Brooklyn Supreme Court will begin hearings on whether the actions of the DOB are justified. Additionally we will be selling photographs and paintings as a fundraiser at Artez’n (444 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn NY). These works of art can also be viewed and purchased on line at .We are attempting to raise funds to save the building and develop it in a way that will help the community. In selling our art work we are hoping to make Broken Angel a permanent art installation and fixture of Brooklyn. For those who are interested in viewing the building additional photos of Broken Angel can by seen at . In closing my family would like to say thank you to all of the people who have been so gracious in their offers of help. We deeply appreciate your support.
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