A bizarre bazaar! Morbid Anatomy Museum hosts a flea market

So ornamented: Jewelry maker Wren Britton of PureVile Designs shows off some of the pieces he will have for sale at the Morbid Anatomy Museum’s flea market.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

This flea market is banking on Brooklyn’s morbid curiosity.

The Morbid Anatomy Museum has long been offering lectures on its collection of taxidermied animals, dead insects, and antique pharmaceutical ephemera. But on June 29, it will stop talking about creatures and curiosities and start selling them, when it hosts a market featuring a dozen purveyors of oddities.

“We want to support our community of friends who are making really strange art,” said Morbid Anatomy head librarian Laetitia Barbier. “It is a monument to this bizarre niche culture that we represent.”

The oddball repository has hosted a handful of flea markets in the past, but this will be the first one in the summertime. It will also mark the opening day of Morbid Anatomy’s new museum and library space in Gowanus, which was previously housed in the nearby Observatory Room.

The expansion is a testament to Brooklyn’s love of the wonderfully weird, said Barbier.

“It is a real achievement for us to have this space,” she said.

The freaky fair will feature weird items including lamps made out of lamb skeletons, taxidermied mice dressed as humans, and pillows printed with images of ancient medical devices.

“I like the look of something that is old and timeworn and falling apart,” said Wren Britton, the brains behind PureVile Designs, which will have a stall at the market. “I like taking something old that someone has thrown art and making something new out of it. There is a beauty in the way time ravages things.”

Britton, who makes jewelry out of items such as dead animals, doll parts, and bugs, acknowledges that his art is not for everyone.

“Sometimes people are put off by the things I make, but it always creates conversation,” he said.

The Morbid Anatomy Summer Flea Market at the Morbid Anatomy Museum (424 A Third Ave. at the corner of Seventh Street in Gowanus, www.morbidanatomy.blogspot.com). June 29 at noon. Free.

Reach reporter Danielle Furfaro at dfurfaro@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-2511. Follow her at twitter.com/DanielleFurfaro.
Bugging out: Sculptor Wren Britton makes works of art out of animal and insect parts.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

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