Forget the mayhem of Black Friday’s mall madness; Austinites are bagging the big box bonanza for something a tad more unique. The Blue Genie Art Bazaar is scouring up the holiday spirit with a treasure trove of local artistry for its 23rd knockout year, drawing in those keen on ditching mainstream retail for a slice of hometown talent.
It's here where one can stroll past a plethora of locally crafted ceramics, candles, and countless other nifty gifts. “A lot of people in the community have made this a tradition for their holidays, and they come back with their families every year,” Lani Gonzalez, the managing director, noted in a statement obtained by KVUE.
The bazaar, which initially popped up back in 2001, has rooted itself firmly in local culture. This year, over 400 artists threw their hats in the ring, vying for a coveted spot to showcase their work. Only 200 made the final cut, ensuring that the bazaar remains a meticulously curated collection that captivates buyers through quality and originality. Dana Younger, a partner at Blue Genie, detailed their arrangement: “What we do is we host the vendors. Each ones sets up their own little area and displays their work, but the vendors aren't here. It's more like pop-up retail", according to CBS Austin.