The Oddities and Curiosities Expo Is Coming to Austin
The perfect place to stock your cabinet of curiosities
By Mazzy Oliver Smallwood,
11:50AM, Fri. Jun. 17, 2022
If you’re in need of a painting of a human heart, a beautifully etched sheep skull, a necklace made of alligator vertebrae, or a cartoon print of your favorite horror character, the Oddities and Curiosities Expo is the place to go.
The celebration of all things weird, spooky, and rare showcases the unusual work of independent artists, collectors, and craftspeople in its tour across the U.S. and makes its Austin stop at the Palmer Events Center this Saturday, June 18, 10am-6pm. Its vendors sell everything from preserved beetles and butterflies to unique (sustainably sourced) taxidermy, creepy dolls, decorated longhorn skulls (for the UT alumni, presumably), crystals, antiques, candles for rituals, handcrafted spooky soaps, beaded jewelry, and many more unique finds beyond your wildest imaginations. Horror fans, art collectors, animal lovers, and anyone with a fascination for the macabre will find themselves at home.
Priding themselves on being a DIY-run show, the expo only books original vendors and artists, not franchise-based sellers. While bringing the works of folks from out of town, it also gives attendees the chance to shop from local Texan vendors. Shop the whimsical paintings of bats, frogs turning into mushrooms, human hearts being run through by daggers, and more by San Antonio-based artist Caitlin Rose. Visit the Looney Tunes-style art of monstrous figures by local Austin artist Spicy Donut. Or see the wares of Waco's home for all things spooky, Skellington Curiosities.
For a more hands-on experience, consider learning the art of taxidermy in the Two-Headed Duckling Taxidermy Class led by Heather Clark, a master in the art of beautifully preserving specimens. Tickets for this six-hour class run for $235 and include entry into the expo. Seats for this class are very limited, so don’t wait until the last minute to buy a ticket.
Those interested can rest assured that no animals were killed for the sake of the class or the expo as a whole, and all specimens are sustainably sourced from farms, vet clinics, foraging, etc.
The Oddities and Curiosities Expo is Sat., June 18, 10am-6pm at Palmer Events Center, 900 Barton Springs Rd. Advance tickets $10 at odditiesandcuriositiesexpo.com, or $15 on the day. Open to all ages, although some items on display may be upsetting or overwhelming for some children. Costumes are welcome but may be subject to search; weapons not allowed. Masks are highly recommended for all attendees.