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Arts District Flea Los Angeles: A New Flea Market

LOCAL BUZZ: Join us in our ongoing Local Buzz feature, where each Friday we bring you the story on an exciting business or event neighboring us here in the ever-inspiring Los Angeles Fashion District. Today, we explore The Arts District Flea Los Angeles, a one-of-a-kind indoor flea market in the heart of the Los Angeles Arts District. 

The Arts District is a corner of eastern Downtown LA, bound by the 101, the LA River, and 7th street. The area along the LA riverbank used to be home to large crops of grapes, oranges, grapefruits and more. The surrounding warehouses and industrial buildings along with the railroad shipped the produce, many of which are still standing in this area today. This was how the history of its artistic relevance began – a print shop opened to produce unique and aesthetically appealing labels for the fruit boxes.

The citrus industry unfortunately gave way to the trucking and railways, but the artistic draw of the space remained. Performers and artists began to convert the industrial spaces into studio areas, so much so that the City of LA actually passed a 1981 ordinance called AIR: Artist in Residence. This gave permission to the artists to live and work in the area.

Ever since, artists continue to live, work and visit the area. A trip to the district today will reveal fun and exciting street art, a plethora of galleries, event spaces, and different small businesses including shops, restaurants and cafes. It is an inspiring place to spend a day observing.

One of the newest destinations in this area is the Arts District Flea Los Angeles. Located by Urth Café, Arts District flea seeks to provide a communal space for businesses and artists to showcase their products, whether fashion, jewelry and accessories, art, furniture or other goods. As traditional malls lose their appeal and consumers increasingly favor small and local businesses, it promises to be a bustling operation, and the location could not be any more suited to its cause. If the history above and photos below don’t inspire you to go check it out, we’re not sure what will!

All images used with permission courtesy of Arts District Flea Los Angeles

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