North Texas Daily

Local artists connect to community through bazaar

Local artists connect to community through bazaar

Local artists connect to community through bazaar
September 20
17:55 2021

Last week, Denton’s Rubber Gloves converted its space typically used for live music events into a place for local artists to sell their work.

Vendors lined up in rows of tables featuring pieces such as paintings, jewelry, clothing and ceramics at the Community Bazaar, an event organized by a local artist, Strawbeary QT. 

With a live DJ set and food available, local artists had the opportunity to sell their pieces and connect with other vendors and Denton residents in a creative environment. 

Satire artist Chris Umunna, 21, said they have been making art for about 10 months, and they were excited to display their work at the Community Bazaar to show their growth as an artist. 

“I started back when COVID first happened,” Umunna said. “[My girlfriend and I] were just painting during quarantine and I didn’t think I was really good at it. It started to become therapeutic to make art, and I started doing it almost every day and now, I’m here.” 

Their table featured vibrant prints, paintings and drawings, with Umunna’s artistic process being deeply inspired by music, dark humor and difficult life events. 

“The easiest way for me to get things out of my head is to sketch it out, kind of like how I would hear it existing in my head,” Umunna said. “Some of my art comes from really transformative parts of my life where I was going through changes and losing people in my life that I thought were close, and my art really helps me see forward and become reborn.”

UNT student Cate Frazier, 21, said she was especially excited about this event as it was her first time as a vendor.

“It was my first time selling art so I was actually really worried about the turnout,” Frazier said. 

Much like Umunna, Frazier said she started her journey as an artist after experiencing the “COVID-19 blues” during quarantine. 

“I started feeling really down during quarantine, and so I tried to find a way to get creative and open my mind up,” Frazier said. 

Frazier also said she found success at the Community Bazaar and was happy her hard work paid off. 

“The event went so well and more people ended up showing up than I expected and I almost sold out of my earrings,” she said. 

Denton-based artist Betti Tristan, 21, displayed numerous paintings, sketches and poems at her booth. Tristan credits her quiet demeanor as a child to her origins as an artist and gains inspiration from people and visions she sees in dreams. 

“I just think people are super gorgeous and interesting,” Tristan said. “These days my process comes from dreams. I’ll make a sketch, layer it with colored pencils, then lay down a coat of acrylic or oil paint, and keep going until I can make myself stop working.”

Tristan said she and roommate Frazier learned a lot and plan on coming back to sell as often as they can. 

“We learned a lot about what would sell better and better ways to present our table next time and we’re both excited to see what works and I’ll also try some different avenues for selling my art as well,” she said. “The event itself was super fun, and I got to meet a lot of people.”

Featured Image: A sign reading “slow fashion or die” hangs on a clothes rack at the Rubber Gloves Community Bazaar in Denton, Texas on Sept. 11, 2021. Photo by Meredith Holser

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Adrianna Barrera

Adrianna Barrera

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