Andrew Cotton
  Choichun Leung
Indiana native Josh Goldstein received his undergraduate degree from Washington University in St. Louis, and a bachelor's degree in architecture from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn.

Spurred by a Southwest road trip where he and his wife took pictures of old chop suey parlors and 24-hour donut shops, Josh started photographing signs and storefronts on his bicycle rides around New York City.Chinese fish markets, Jamaican patty palaces, Hassidic hat shops, and halal live chicken markets/auto repair shops all interested him.

But it was the classic bodega that especially caught his attention. Attracted by the bodegas' bright colors, bold graphics, rotating set of key words and phrases, their can-do, entrepreneurial spirit and current state of faded glory, Goldstein began constructing contrast-boosted, inkjet-output,
birch-plywood-mounted odes to the city:

"Density .. Chaos .. Disrepair .. Impermanence .. Diversity .. Simultaneity .. Disorder.

"The soul of New York City is this.Resonating in the cacaphony of wildly divergent wants, needs and desires of its citizens, both past and present, all crammed together and forced to co-exist in a seemingly urban landscape.

"New York's densely-frenetic layering is a major inspiration for my work.I love how old storefront signs peek out from behind new ones, and how a building door can be a canvas for artists, taggers and guerilla marketers. A lamppost is rarely just a lamppost.It's a community bulletin board, a graffiti showcase, an exercise bar, an old sneaker receptacle.

"To me, the city is at its best when its functions overlap, histories intermingle, and cultures collide, creating exciting and ambiguous new relationships.This delirious frenzy, the heart of New York City's ecology, engages a 'war between beauty and ugliness which demands both become strange new things.'

"My chopped-up, blown-apart, and re-constructed sculptural photo collages are an homage to the churning engine of New York, which is constantly creating new cities, both beautiful and ugly, right on top of the old one."