Last month, Frank Traynor was forced to disassemble the wooden shack he’d been using as an art shop for over a year and a half. The garden on India Street where it had survived rent-free was set to be paved over for a development project — so, with the help of some friends, he put the shack on a truck and drove it 2.5 miles to Bushwick.
The Perfect Nothing Catalog — now open Saturdays and Sundays in the backyard of Signal Gallery, at 260 Johnson Ave. — is filled with what Traynor calls “art and non-art”: everything from jeweled daggers to denim sweaters to a necklace made out of cement and dog hair. Painted seashells line one wall; on another is a collection of handcrafted pots, candles and a plaster incense holder modeled in the shape of his father’s sandal. Although no prices are displayed, the majority of the items are for sale.
Traynor himself is an eclectic character. He’s held jobs doing everything from running a church in Florida to making and selling teepees. He doesn’t consider himself an artist, but running the art shop in Brooklyn is his current day-to-day job and he plans to continue it for the indefinite future.
The artists that make the items for The Perfect Nothing Catalog are some of the shop’s main customers, but Traynor welcomes all passerby to stop in, browse, and maybe even buy one of the witch-made knives that you can see in our video.