Weissman Ira, 1928-2023, a longtime resident of New York City and Blooming Grove, N.Y., died peacefully at home in Blooming Grove on January 10, surrounded by his wife Iwona and friends. He was 94.
Ira was born in New York City and trained as a Civil Engineer. A successful real estate developer, Ira early recognized the potential of the underused industrial lofts in Soho. In the 1970s, with other investors, he renovated the noted Little Singer Building and several other buildings on Broadway and Lafayette St. An intrepid entrepreneur throughout his life, he helmed businesses including a sand and gravel company, a recording studio, and an antique store. He also renovated and sold houses in Montauk and New Orleans.
Ira loved art and was an accomplished folk art painter and wood carver, exhibiting among other venues, at the Museum of American Folk Art, Rockefeller Center and the Empire State Building. He was painting on the last day of his life.
Ira was predeceased by his wife Sara Ann Freed, the beloved chief of Mysterious Books, who succumbed to leukemia in 2003. He is survived by his wife Iwona, son Michael and his family, and a daughter Wendy.
Donations in his honor may be made to the Museum of American Folk Art.