The building is actually part of a row of 5. According to the American Architect and Building News, the mixed-use (flats over stores) row was built in 1890 by owner George H. McGill of Gravesend, and was designed by architect Henry Vollweiler:
"Building Intelligence; Houses; Brooklyn, N. Y.," AABN vol. 28, no. 747 (Apr. 19, 1890): p. xv.
– "Seventh Ave., s w cor. Second St., four-st’y brick dwell., tin roof; cost, $10,000; owner, George H. McGill, Gravesend Neck Road; architect, Henry Vollweller, 14 Elm St."– "Seventh Ave., w s, 20' s Second St., 4 four-st’y brick dwells., tin roofs; cost, $8,000 each; owner, George H. McGill, Gravesend Neck Road; architect, Henry Vollweller, 14 Elm St."
Not much is known about architect Henry Vollweiler. His name appears in one of Christopher Gray's "Streetscapes" columns, in connection with the Stewart Woodford house at 869 President Street in Park Slope; Vollweiler in 1929 redesigned the original Henry Ogden Avery interiors of the 1885 Woodford house.
Mr. Ravitz, the subject of a profile in the current issue of Borough President Markowitz's "Brooklyn Newspaper", maintains a website featuring photographs of his work, including the many "Drip" installations on his building's facade.