Storefronts at night use lighting, displays and windows to exhibit a simulated appearance of presence. This simulation, however, is transparently obvious and actually serves to indicate that these spaces are deserted.
Not only do these spaces at night contain unavailable goods and services, they solicit viewers whom are typically not present, generating a play of signs that only point to each other.
Photographs of these storefronts allow a previously absent viewer to view a representation of these spaces, but further remove that viewer from the promises of presence exhibited by the storefronts, and ultimately the goods and services the storefronts advertise. What remains is artificial and stark, a transparent simulation contained within another transparent simulation, where even the physical storefront is now a simulated illusion, contained in an image and unavailable to the viewer except as an idea.
from: Levi Wedel