At the center of the Bogart Salon, toys and trash make up a sprawling model of two very different allegorical places, the “Art Scene” and “Hedge Fund City,” connected by choo-choo trains. The model was supposedly devised by a clandestine group of art collectors from the wealthy suburbs of Westchester County, New York, and Fairfield County,Connecticut. They call themselves the People’s Art Collective.
In the “Art Scene” section of the model, we find many familiar characters from across Brooklyn’s artsy enclaves—toy figures of bearded men, a deejay, laptop users in a coffee shop, and giant rats along the Gowanus Canal. There’s a box wallpapered in the visage of an artists’ loft called Heartbreak Hotel. And a “Volcano of Youthful Passions” made of empty beer bottles, crushed cigarette packs, foam peanuts, and Mickey Mouse souvenirs, wrapped in tape and painted blue. Crowded and dirty, the “Art Scene” encapsulates an outsider’s perspective of our fair borough, a disdainful view that is more-or-less accurate.