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North Brooklyn Collective Sells Designer Wheels and Local Art

BUSHWICK — Even when he worked driving cabs until a few months ago, Max Cohen found a creative way to pass his work hours by photographing the New York City scenes out his car window.

And now the filmmaker-entrepreneur has opened a space for other artists to display their talents — and for bikers to strike a deal on designer wheels.

Cohen’s new 2,000-square-foot store, the North Brooklyn Collective, had a soft opening earlier this summer and will host its grand opening party in September, with trendy fixed-gear Sole Bicycles, intricately decorated skateboards (from the popular brand Natural Koncept), vintage clothes, handmade surfboards and whatever else artisans bring in the door.

“We strive to be the street sign at the intersection of art and commerce,” said Cohen, 28, who studied film at the School of Visual Arts and then got his MBA at Metropolitan College of New York.

“I’ve always been my own boss and it [the store] seemed like a pretty profitable endeavor," he said.

The shop on Knickerbocker Avenue has already achieved success with its bike selection, quickly selling its first batch of Sole Bicycles, he said. The two-wheelers, which are made in Venice Beach by Cohen's friends, are affordably priced (at around $400) compared to similar designer bikes because he buys them straight from the company, he said.

"These guys started their bike company in their dorm room," Cohen said. "There's a huge fixed gear community and the company had primarily been online and needed a dealer."

Customers can personalize their bikes at the shop, he said.

"It's like a Subway sandwich, where you get to pick all the parts, like the wheels, the frame," he said.

The shop is currently open every day 11 a.m. — 8 or 9 p.m.

Cohen has not yet picked the date for his grand opening party.