Hold onto your Brie and crudite's.
Dolgenos, Bergen & Newman, one of the latest arrivals on the SoHo scene, has found a new way into the hearts of style-conscious yuppies.
Sell them art.
Yes, not only can you divorce or incorporate yourself at this first-of-a-kind law firm, but you can hite wine and beer, pasta salad, Brie and crudite's. The artist keeps 80 percent of the proceeds, and 20 percent goes to the firm.
Last week's reception was a careful mix of zoot suits and pin stripes. And if no one really understood the art, no one would say so. "I guess I'm still learning," Bergen said somewhat sheepishly when asked why he liked the art.
Dolgenos, the resident philosopher, who with his gray hair and youthful good looks resembles comedian Steve Martin, chose a scholarly response. "We think this helps balance thinking and feeling," he said, "of everyday commercial legal images, color, sensuality, challenge . . . "
Response from the partners' clients, which include a major real estate developer, ad agencies and entertainment figures such as the Glenn Miller band and the heavy metal group Manowar, has been positive. "They think it's very colorful," says Bergen. "They like coming to SoHo. It's a refreshing break from Park Avenue or Wall Street."
The response from artists has for the most part been encouraging as well. "Hey, these guys gave me a chance," says Lund. "Lawyers selling art? Yes, I was skeptical. But here I am."
There are, to be sure, law firms that collect art. But there are, it appears, none like Dolgenos, Bergen & Newman, which actually peddles it.
"Don't get us wrong," says Dolgenos. "We have not gone into the art business. We want to give the kids a chance to show. We want to provide our clients high-quality legal service in a humanistic setting."
The setting is open to the public Saturday and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.