New TV show stars dumpster-diving flea market artisans
A new flea market reality show debuts tonight on the Discovery Channel. “Dirty Money” is the story of two brothers, John and Jimmy DiResta, who turn dumpster-dive trash into amazing works of art, and then sell them at flea markets and swap meets. In one of the first episodes, for example, the brothers meld an old typewriter and a modern computer keyboard to make a steampunk work of art that is actually functional as well. The show, which launches tonight at 10 p.m., includes footage shot at flea markets in the New York City area.
Eric Demby of the Brooklyn Flea says that film crews shoot at his market all the time, but non-disclosure agreements prevent him from naming names. However, speaking generally about the growing trend of bargain-hunting reality television programs, he says, “It makes sense that flea markets and TV shows about them are popular. When the economy is in a downturn, everybody wants get lucky at the alchemy game, turning their lead into gold.”
The DiResta brothers developed “the sickness” — an addiction to flea markets — as young children growing up on Long Island. Their father, known as the “Lord of the Fleas,” raised John and Jimmy as part of the flea market culture.
The brothers spend time with dad in an upcoming episode.
Aug. 23 Update: Per this Aug. 21 post on the Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market Web site, the show has been shooting there regularly. Check out other links at the post.