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Trailblazer Blue Genie Art Industries Is Moving South

Art-maker finds a new home for its raucous spirit

On the heels of the news that a new east Austin space for artists is being developed, The Austin Chronicle reported Tuesday that one of the most important players in Austin's eastward-moving art vanguard has announced that it plans to relocate.

Blue Genie Art Industries, which has created some of Austin's most iconic, mostly commercial sculptures—totems, really—will move from its warehouse residence on Springdale Road to Burleson Road, 10 or so miles south and a stone's throw from McKinney State Falls near the back side of Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.

The art-making complex, which established itself at its current location 17 years ago, when it was behind a Goodwill processing center and other light-industrial businesses, made a name for itself with some of the most iconic commercial art sculptures in town—including the Torchy's Tacos devil-baby , the Fran's Hamburgers rooftop sculpture a on its South Congress location replaced by a Torchy's, and the studio's namesake, Blue Genie Car Wash (that one is now moving to the new art space)—as well as its flamboyant parties, Danger Derby, and Christmas bazaar.

Although inevitable rent hikes in the now-buzzy area have taken their toll, Blue Genie's Kevin Collins told the Chronicle's Wayne Alan Brenner that the main reason for the move is that the area around it is growing up—with such sophisticated art-making and -showing spaces as Canopy and the forthcoming Springdale General developing—while they wanted the studio to maintain its more raucous, industrial spirit.

They'll also have a larger facility, more room to spread out, and like-spirited businesses nearby, the Chronicle reported. They'll be having one last party before they go, though—tomorrow night, April 1.