One man has kept a perfect record of a lot of New York’s old Mom & Pop stores and his name is Randy Hage, see the video to appreciate the quality of his work.
His day job is making set models and props for TV and films and he’s also the owner of Doll House Lady Miniatures, a retail hobby store.
He started photographing New York storefronts in the late 1990′s. He was then and still is a visitor to New York City from his home in Los angeles but he loves the old Mom & Pop stores.
He loves the handpainted signs, the individuality of each store, the inevitable rust, decay and those scrappy street art tags adorning everything. All of that make those old stores special to him
He started making scale models to immortalize these shops, most of which have now vanished completely.
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To see his work apart from the video, go to Randy Hage flickr feed and you will see a broader visual record of what he has produced.
At a time when gentrification has never semed to move so fast, his art holds the past for us, the record of an entire lifestyle that has in most ways been eaten up by Dunkin’ Donuts and 7Elevens.
So thank you Randy for your gift of the heart to all New Yorkers.