Serena’s Art Factory
If you poke around the shops in Willemstad, you’ll notice one distinct product in many window displays: a buxom, faceless lady, rendered in ceramic and given various colorful outfits. She comes in small, medium, and large (as in, nearly life-size), as well as atop a wine stopper and on a Christmas ornament. She’s the creation of Serena Israel, a German mold maker who moved to Curaçao
and started creating her iconic dolls in 2008. The demand for her Chichis (meaning “oldest sister”), as she named them, quickly outgrew the supply, and Serena had a genius idea: to enlist the help of women on the island and allow them to make her dolls their own unique product—a souvenir that embodies the spirit of Curaçao. Today, she employs 60 locals, and each doll sold is unique, painted by an artist native to the island. Serena’s Art Factory, about 20 minutes outside of Willemstad, is open daily for tours, and she also holds periodic workshops where attendees can create their very own doll to take home with them.