MOM & POPS of the L.E.S.
“Mom-and-Pops of the L.E.S” contains near life-size photographs of historic neighborhood storefronts
James and Karla Murray have installed at Seward Park in the Lower East Side a 9 foot height x 12 foot width rectangular wood-frame sculpture consisting of near life-size photographs of four mom-and-pop neighborhood stores of the Lower East Side, most of which are no longer in business and have sadly disappeared from the streetscape; a bodega, a coffee shop/luncheonette, a delicatessen, and a newsstand. Each of these shops represent small businesses that were common in the Lower East Side and helped bring the community together through people’s daily interactions. When viewing the near life-size photographs one can get a visceral sense of the impact of the losses, on our experience of the city and on those who once depended on the shops that are now gone. The installation is a plea for recognition of the unique and irreplaceable contribution made to New York by small, often family-owned businesses. These neighborhood stores help set the pulse, life, and texture of their communities.