This weekend, Nov. 9-10, is the 26th Annual Tucson Pima Arts Council Open Studio Tour. More than 240 local artists, scattered all over Pima County, will open their art studios to visitors (and hopefully make a few sales). My midtown studio– Wind Dancer Design– will be one of them.
Buying local is always a good idea, but the Open Studio Tour gives art and craft lovers an opportunity to buy from Tucson’s smallest and most unique micro-businesses– local artists. It’s also highly cost-effective to buy direct from an artist, since local galleries and gift shops take 40-50% of the sale price as a consignment fee when you buy through them.
Since going to 240 artist studios is impossible in one weekend, the TPAC website allows you to review what’s available by location or by artist and plan your outing. Although there are many artist studios and collectives around downtown and the University of Arizona (like my daughter’s), there is also a high concentration of artist studios in the central Tucson area (where I am). Tour booklets which provide detailed maps, thumbnail photos, and artist details are available at local libraries and retailers around town, and you can download one here. (The booklets are so well done that they provide a year-round reference to local artists.)
The tour is Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. both days.
This holiday season, it’s time to forsake the chachkies made by Chinese children and buy uniquely Tucson gifts of local art. Come on down!