A quirky little shop on White Street in TriBeca, Let There Be Neon is one of the most unique shopping destinations in the entire city. As may be gathered from the establishment’s name, this is a shop that solely manufactures and sells neon signs. From the classic cursive pennants hung above jukeboxes in dive bars around the world to eccentric, modern art installations, Let There Be Neon is a no holds barred intermediary for the creative and the visually bright.
For those Duane Street guests who take to the neighborhood streets for a nice stroll this summer, it’s definitely worth stopping by and perusing this radical store. The inside of the shop is as interesting as it sounds. Neon outlines of a human body on the ceiling, seemingly hovering above you, and little a pizzaman above scripture reading Al’s Pizzeria provide an interesting combination of city street and modern art museum appeal. Exploring their vast inventory will truly flip the simple understanding of neon potential most of us have.
If you’re able to strike up a conversation with one of the shop’s many kind salesmen, you can also get a little bit of background on this peculiar Tribeca business. The shop was co-founded by a man named Rudi Stern, whose resume makes him seem as qualified as anyone to start a neon sign shop. From early days at the liberal arts force Bard College to creating a work called Psychedelic Celebrations for Timothy Leary to producing light shows for classic acts like, The Birds and The Doors, Stern lead quite a life.
An easy and interesting stop on your TriBeca journey, Let There Be Neon is a beautiful glimpse into the neighborhood’s history and eccentricity. If you happen to be throwing a big party during your visit to NYC, Let There Be Neon offers rentals for many of their finest neon signs. If you’re open to purchasing and collecting art, one of these funky modern creations just may be worth picking up for your living room or game room back home.