Monday, April 30, 2018

Antelis Pharmacy Vintage Neon Signage Update

One of the highlights at our "Store Front II- A History Preserved" book discussion and signing sponsored by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation at the Hudson Library in Greenwich Village was that we were able to meet the family members of one of the stores that we had documented in our book. Bonnie Antelis, whose father owned Antelis Pharmacy in Midwood Brooklyn attended the event with her sister Honey . She told us that her grandfather founded Antelis Pharmacy before passing it on to her father, who unfortunately passed away in 2000. The pharmacy was sold to a different owner, but the new owners kept the gorgeous neon signage that adorned its facade. Above is our photo of Antelis Pharmacy which appears in "Store Front II- A History Preserved".

We always loved Antelis Pharmacy's neon signage with its combination of script lettering and different colored neon. In the photo we took in 2011, we were pleasantly surprised to see that the neon was still working as many store owners we have interviewed over the years have repeatedly told us that it is a "real labor of love" to maintain these ‪vintage neon signs‬ because they need constant work to fix broken transformers, fuses and other things that get broken when exposed to rain & snow.  
When the Antelis family decided to sell the entire building in 2016, Bonnie and her family told us that "We could not let that sign go. We contacted many sign people and none of them wanted to touch the sign as it was over 60 years old. After a long search, we finally found someone to remove it (Emil of Sign Select in Brooklyn) and fix the transformers. I now have the "Antelis" script neon hanging in my living room, while my sister has the Rx part of the signage and my other sister has the letters P and M from the PHARMACY as her name is Paula and her husband's name is Mike."  We can't think of a happier outcome for this wonderful neon signage which was manufactured by the Silverescent Neon Sign Company in Brooklyn.

The photos below of the restored neon are courtesy of Bonnie Antelis:

Lower East Side Coffee Shop, East Village, NYC

We love this #coffeeshop ☕️ oversize #neonsign so much that we have documented it during the day as well as at night. We always try to take our night photos as late as possible to capture that intangible feel that New York City has late in the evening when all the commuters have returned home and most of the tourists have already gone to sleep. This #momandpop diner is open 24 hours so we were able to document it at around 2am. Photo appears in our book “New York Nights”.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Mercer Street Books, Greenwich Village, NYC

Mercer Street Books, owned by Wayne Conti, has been in business in Greenwich Village for 27 years. They sell used, out-of-print and even some new books as well as a selection of LPs. We love their piles of books inside and the small rack outside of used books. We encourage everyone to visit their local independent #bookstore today, Saturday April 28th in celebration of the fourth annual “Independent Bookstore Day". Many local independent bookstores across the U.S. will participate in the national celebration with some giving away special prizes and giving discounts.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Zito & Sons Bakery, Greenwich Village, NYC

Zito & Sons Bakery was open for 80 years and was the longest continuously occupied store on Bleecker Street until its closure in 2004. Antonino Zito and his wife lived in an apartment behind the #bakery and raised three sons, who took over the business when Antonino passed away in 1963. Sadly the closure of the bakery was due to rising costs of energy (they had a coal-fired oven)🔥, raw supplies and the popular low-carb diet. We absolutely loved their lard bread 🍞 and would often get some to have with cheese from @murrayscheese located just 2 doors away from Zito’s. #Analog photo from 2001 appears in our book “Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York”.

Photography and Interview from our visit to ESPO's shop for 6sqft...


"This is ESPO’s Art World, artist Stephen Powers’ sign shop. But as you can imagine, this space is much more than that."

The excellent filming our "Storefronts of New York II Images and Anecdotes: Book Talk on April 25th, 2018 with Greenwich Village Society For Historic Preservation.

More soon... 

Thursday, April 26, 2018

"Defenders of New York"

"Defenders of New York" t-shirt by Molly Woodward of 

Thank you Molly!

Photography and Interview from our visit to ESPO's shop for 6sqft...


"Walking along Fourth Avenue in Boerum Hill, the storefronts all look pretty similar–pizza shops, laundromats, cute cafes–until you come to the corner of Bergen Street and see the large, colorful collage of signs gracing the side of the little brick building. This is ESPO’s Art World, artist Stephen Powers’ sign shop. But as you can imagine, this space is much more than that."

Hudson. Thursday morning fun, NYC, just now...

Wednesday, April 25, 2018


White Horse Tavern has been in business since 1880. It is one of the few wood-framed structures still in existence in New York City.

To hear more about our work documenting #momandpop stores, bars and restaurants please join us at our “Store Fronts of New York” book discussion and signing with@gvshp_nyc at the Hudson Park Library 66 Leroy Street at 7th Ave South in Greenwich Village tonight Wednesday April 25th at 6:30pm. It is free to attend but if possible please register in advance through@gvshp_nyc to ensure a spot as space is limited.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

FREE! Tomorrow night!

We hope you join us at our “Store Front II-A History Preserved” book discussion and signing with Greenwich Village Society For Historic Preservation at the Hudson Park Library, 66 Leroy St in Greenwich Village this Wednesday April 25th at 6:30pm. It is free to attend but if possible please register in advance through @gvshp_nyc to ensure a spot as space is  limited.

Register Online HERE:

Pitt Street, Lower East Side, NYC, not that long ago...

We held our first set of storefront photography and oral history workshops at the Neighborhood Preservation Center this month and one of the things we talked about is our personal connection between documenting graffiti and #momandpop storefronts. Since graffiti is a letter-based art form we were always interested in #type and #typography and we often looked at #storefront #signage, especially #handpainted signs and #neon with interesting #fonts. This photo captured both of our interests in one frame.

To hear more about our work documenting stores, please join us at our “Store Front II-A History Preserved” book discussion and signing with @gvshp_nyc at the Hudson Park Library in Greenwich Village this Wednesday April 25th at 6:30pm. It is free to attend but if possible please register in advance through @gvshp_nyc to ensure a spot as space is limited.

Hudson. Sunday fun over at Palace Skateboards, NYC...

Monday, April 23, 2018

Coastal Brooklyn was once full of industry...

Coastal Brooklyn was once full of industry but in 2006 there was a huge fire 🔥 that destroyed a large rope manufacturing complex. The silo in this photo is all that remains today as the area is slowly being redeveloped into residential buildings.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Delmonico’s, located in the Financial District, opened in 1837 and is considered the oldest fine dining restaurant in the United States

 During the 1800s women were not allowed to dine in restaurants without men present. On April 20, 1868 a group of women decided to protest this archaic law and held a luncheon at Delmonico’s. The restaurant not only did not turn the women away but gave them a private dining room and served a special prix-fixe menu of $1 per diner.  In honor of the 150th anniversary of that landmark meal, Delmonico’s is hosting a “Ladies’ Luncheon”, featuring a special menu created by James Beard-winning chef, Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune.

Photo from 2010 appears in our book “New York Nights” along with more text about this historic restaurant @delmonicosnyc which also is known as the birthplace of Lobster Newburg, Eggs Benedict and the dessert Baked Alaska.

Monday, April 16, 2018

We are delighted to announce that C.O. Bigelow Apothecaries is a generous supporter of our Capturing the Faces & Voices of Manhattan’s Neighborhood Storefronts, a photography and oral history workshop

We are delighted to announce that C.O. Bigelow Apothecaries is a generous supporter of our Capturing the Faces & Voices of Manhattan’s Neighborhood Storefronts, a photography and oral history workshop we are leading in partnership with the Neighborhood Preservation Center. The free workshops, which are fully booked, begin tonight, Monday April 16th.

C.O. Bigelow Apothecaries was established in 1838. It is the oldest apothecary in America and specializes in such extreme customer service that most of its medicines, whether over-the-counter or prescription, are behind the counter to retain the intimate connection with the customer. Since 1939, three generations of Ginsberg’s have owned and operated the shop, passing down from father to son to grandson, Ian Ginsberg.

Photo and interview with Ian Ginsberg from 2010 appears in our book "New York Nights".

In the Spring in NYC, we love sitting outside with our #rescuedog @hudsonpittienyc and watching people walk by on Bleecker Street.

Overthrow Boxing on Bleecker near the Bowery is a #boxing workout gym located in the space that was once home to the Yippies, a social activism organization that arose out of the anti-war movements of the 1960s. Joey Goodwin, the founder of @overthrownewyork kept the workout studio space real with duct-taped wrapped punching bags and metal lockers and even decorated an entire wall with copies of the revolutionary "Overthrow Magazine" which used to be printed there and where he got the name for the gym. We love its #neon #signage and all of the #streetart and #graffiti surrounding the #storefront in addition to the bench they have outside for people watching.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Bamonte's Restaurant, Brooklyn, NYC

Bamonte’s is one of the first Italian restaurants in the United States and is also one of Brooklyn’s oldest restaurants. It was established in 1900 and is located on a side street in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Tonight, we dined there with our good friend @sign_of_the_time and met the fourth-generation owner, Nicole Bamonte. The Italian 🇮🇹 restaurant has changed little over the years, with an interior of dark wood paneling, brass chandeliers, white table-cloth covered tables and an open-windowed kitchen where you can see the chefs at work, that has existed before the idea became trendy. We absolutely loved our meal and had an assortment of classic red sauce favorites 🍝spaghetti with marinara, eggplant 🍆 rollatini, and chicken parmigiana and also baked clams oregano as an appetizer. This photo was taken a few years ago but the exterior with its oversize #signage remains unchanged too.

Friday, April 13, 2018

Photos from our visit to architecture firm Woods Bagot​ for 6sqft​...


"Internationally acclaimed architecture firm Woods Bagot opened their first office in 1869 in Adelaide, Australia. 150 years, 15 offices, and 850 staff members later, they’ve designed projects from a master plan for Perth to a mixed-use tech center in Singapore to a rental tower right here in Brooklyn. After opening their first NYC office a decade ago in Midtown, the rapidly expanding firm decided it was time to design a work space for themselves. So last summer, they moved into a brand new 11,000-square-foot home in Lower Manhattan."

Monday, April 9, 2018

Storefronts of New York II Images and Anecdotes: Book Talk with James and Karla Murray

Wednesday, April 25, 2018, 6:30-8:00pm

Hudson Park Library, 66 Leroy St at 7th Ave South  

"Take a photographic journey exploring the Village, as we turn our sights to New York's iconic small businesses. The city's bars, restaurants, cafes, venues, and shops, and their stories behind them are historically and visually significant in their own right. The Murrays' vibrant photography and personal interviews in Store Front II deepens the work of their acclaimed books, Store Front and New York Nights."

"Karla and James Murray are photographers, artists, and authors whose books have earned accolades and awards. Their work has been exhibited around the world and in the New York Times, London Telegraph, Wall Street Journal, New York Post, New York Magazine and The New Yorker."

Free. Reservations Required. Register Online


Our book STORE FRONT: The Disappearing Face of New York in the American Copper Buildings model apartment!

Thank you Untapped Cities Insiders! for an excellent tour... Lower photos from inside the skybridge.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Hudson. Waiting on Spring, NYC, just now...

Polska - Masarnia Quality Meat Market

This Polish meat 🍖 market in Greenpoint, Brooklyn specialized in homemade kielbasa and always had smoked hams for Easter 🐣. #Analog photo from 2004 appears in our book “Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York”.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Photos from our book "Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York" are on display at the Brooklyn Historical Society's new exhibition "Made in Brooklyn".

The photos are on view in both the Giuseppe Fransioli Gallery on the first floor and the Gina Ingoglia Weiner Gallery on the third floor.

Of the 15 mom-and-pop storefronts on display nine of them have closed.

To see more photos of the entire exhibition visit:

Our look at 10 Brooklyn made products as well as our Mom & Pop STORE FRONT photography on display at the Brooklyn Historical Society "Made in Brooklyn" Exhibition via 6sqft...


"The new exhibition at the Brooklyn Historical Society, “The Business of Brooklyn,” celebrates the 100th anniversary of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce and tells the fascinating story of the borough’s 100 years of business, detailing its industrial past, large companies, as well as its preponderance of mom-and-pop shops."

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

El Quijote, an 88 year-old Spanish restaurant located in the Chelsea Hotel closed on Friday March 30th.

When we took this photo in 2010 for our book “New York Nights” and interviewed the 2nd-generation owner Joseph Ramirez, he told us that they had a 30-year lease with the #ChelseaHotel and was not worried about its future. Sadly though, the hotel was sold to a developer soon after we interviewed Joseph and the new owner closed the hotel for a major renovation but the restaurant known for its delicious paella 🥘 and seafood 🦐remained open (although under new ownership since 2014). The new owner finally decided to close the Spanish restaurant although he has told various Press that he will reopen it after renovation is complete. Somehow, we don’t think it will ever be the same...

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Colorful Easter 🐣🐰celebration today with friends and business partners, Meagan and Amanda and her cute pup Beverly at @sparkpretty in the East Village

Spark Pretty #vintage shop specializes in 1990s-themed clothing, toys and accessories and also sells one-of-a-kind custom pieces by their in-house designer Tom Knight. We love the unique clothing they sell and also 💗 that they put lots of time and effort into their shop’s window display!

Wishing everyone who celebrates a very happy Easter 🐣🐇🐰!

To celebrate this holiday we are posting a photo of our visit to Bonbons, a Viennese sweets business, which was founded in 1936 by Rosa Breithuber. In 2002, it was taken over by the Durnberger family, who kept the original charm of the candy shop, selling the same delicacies but also expanding its range with Its own chocolate creations and new confectionery.