Sunday, September 16, 2007

Real estate wonderland, Part 1

Had my Internet access been functional this morning, I would've pointed people to the Riviera Gallery in Williamsburg, where, as part of the Conflux Festival, the gallery became "an artist’s interpretation of a real estate agency called “Riviera Real Estate”, comprised of a full real estate office set as well as improv actors acting the part of Real Estate agents."

(Conflux is "the annual New York festival for contemporary psychogeography, the investigation of everyday urban life through emerging artistic, technological and social practice" and Williamsburg, with its out-of-control real estate market layered on a community artists helped make hip, was an appropriate location.)

I wandered by on Friday night--the gallery, at 103 Metropolitan near Wythe is virtually catercorner to a very real project known as 80 Metropolitan, whose advertisements on the wooden fence surrounding the property (once home of the Old Dutch Mustard building) have been subject to some severe graffiti.

The hipster huckster real estate agents, plying guests with Pernod, offered some creative deals to get buyers into buildings, even if the buildings, as the "Riviera Real Estate Agency" web site suggests, might have their downsides.

For example, Room with a view (above) "may seem a little overtly industrial at first but it's actually very cosy and completely private."

And HPT5054, the "Instant Architectural Liquid Hydrocarbon dream!" (right) from "Harry Trismegistus City Living" (could that be Toll Brothers?) explains that foam-molded construction means "individually customized exteriors are just minutes away."

The web site offers more, including a truly capitalistic take on community:
Give back to the community, and let the community give back to you. We believe that the health of any community is dependent on the interchange of business and profit.

(Emphases in original)

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