Forgotten Holga shots and the sad loss of the Cheyenne Diner

So I have all this 120 film that I shot in my first couple of years of living in New York and am starting to get around to actually processing it and scanning it. And it’s great when you find things like this. These are two dear friends of mine who I worked with at Milk Studios and these two pics were shot on a cold 2008day when we used to attempt ‘cultural Saturdays’. This was also during my Holga phase too. Behind Aly and Danielle is the Cheyenne Diner. It was built in 1940, was a beloved Hell’s Kitchen mainstay  and was frequented by a very diverse range of ‘old New York’ personalities (David Letterman and Jerry Lewis used to eat there a lot). It was shuttered in 2008 when developer Greg O’Connell bought it to close it and build a (you guessed it) condo building. All was not lost however as the developer decided to actually move the diner (some of these were built off site and trucked in) to Red Hook, Brooklyn BUT it was too big to drive over the bridges that line the East River into Brooklyn (many diners were built off site and moved into their location in a single moveable piece. In the end New York’s loss was Alabama’s gain as it was shipped to Birmingham in tact. The sad thing is that diners used to dot the streets of Manhattan. They were frequented by customers of all walks of life and professions and financial demographics. Artists and businessmen would rub shoulders late into the night at the same counter or booths mulling over their daily lives. I feel sad that this integral part of New Yorks’ culture is almost gone, but lucky to have been able to shoot a photo of it.

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