Reel Art creates Pop Culture home in Berwyn’s Depot District
The largest collectible dealer in Chicagoland, Reel Art Collectibles has found a home for its gallery of pop culture at 6727 W. Stanley Avenue in Berwyn’s Depot District. It is the only store of its kind in the area, with movie posters, comic books, rare books and vintage toys. Cory Glaberson, Reel Art’s founder, began collecting at an early age with a great passion for finding unique memorabilia. Twenty years ago he created Reel Art, traveling across North America and Europe buying and selling vintage items and is now opening a place for people to come and find a poster of a favorite movie, a copy of a cherished comic book or a long desired toy.
“We want to create a community of collectors who love movies, comic book illustrations and vintage toys,” says Cory. “This will be a place to hang out and talk about your collections and meet with other people of similar interests. We want to create an ongoing cycle of special events like film screenings, book signings, and lectures on various collectible areas.” Glaberson has always enjoyed meeting collectors at the 45 or more collectable shows he attends each year and appreciates how important collecting is to many people. “Years of working in this business have given me a great respect for collectors,” he says. “I see them as artists who work in a medium of history and memory. Each collection is like a giant installation art project.”
Through the support of the City of Berwyn and the Berwyn Development Corporation (BDC), Cory Glaberson received Tax Increment Financing (TIF) to purchase and renovate of a vacant property in order to expand his existing business. The TIF scope of work included acquisition, roof repair and interior and exterior renovations to convert the former construction office into a retail storefront with 1,450 sq. ft. of showroom retail space and 5,000 sq. ft. of storage. The business held a ribbon cutting ceremony in conjunction with the BDC. Mayor Robert Lovero commented, “I’ve never been in a place that is like this. As I walk around, I see a few toys that I played with as a kid, which is great. It is not only unique to the Depot District but to the City of Berwyn and beyond. With the planned events and unique collections, I think it is going to be a happening place.” Jon Fey continued, “The transformation of this space has been incredible. It went from an unsightly building to being absolutely gorgeous. This is really a credit to our community.”