Just over two decades ago, New York–based glass artists Evan Snyderman and Zesty Meyers were selling a mishmash of found objects and assorted antiques from an eight-foot-long folding table for extra cash. First, they set up at the East Village flea market, but soon they moved north to a parking lot that was, in those days, the crack-of-dawn gathering place for style-obsessed New Yorkers: the 26th Street flea market.
“That was the real deal,” Snyderman recalls of the beloved flea. “You had to be aggressive, flamboyant, and on your game.” They watched and they learned.
One day, something clicked: “We had bought this Art Deco lamp from the 1920s in Rhode Island for $100,” Snyderman remembers. “We sold it to a picker at the flea market for about $300 and then we just watched as it traveled up the food chain. It ended up going to a gallery in SoHo.” Their side project, they realized, had serious profit potential.
Fast forward 20 years: As R & Company (née R 20th Century), the vintage-shop-turned-gallery established in a Brooklyn warehouse in 1997 and stationed on Franklin Street since 2000, moves into an 8,000 square-foot, three-story Tribeca gallery, it seems it has climbed its way to the top of that food chain. Forget extra cash; these days they’re selling furniture – old and new – for sums that the average person might spend on a new car or starter home.
Katie Stout’s Double Girl floor lamp, a collection of Haas Brothers objects, and a Renate Müller stuffed bear surround Masanori Umeda’s iconic Memphis boxing ring, in the basement.