Santa Fe’s week of Native American art draws thousands

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A series of premiere Native American art and antiquities markets packed into a single week in Santa Fe are expected to attract tens of thousands of people to the New Mexico capital.

The markets range from the Antique American Indian Art Show— which features pre-1950s Native American art — to the Santa Fe Indian Market, where 1,000 artists show their work on the city’s historic plaza and surrounding streets for what organizers say is the world’s largest juried show of indigenous artwork.

Organizers estimate Santa Fe Indian Market alone has attracted about 150,000 people and roughly $80 million to the city in recent years.

Here’s a look at four of the markets happening this week in Santa Fe:

SANTA FE INDIAN MARKET

The market event officially opens Saturday morning, with artists setting up at sunrise for local and international collectors who have been known to congregate downtown during the early morning hours to make high-end purchases from some of the market’s best-known artists.

About 1,000 artists from every region of the United States and Canada show and sell their work during the two-day event. They specialize in creating traditional and contemporary beaded pieces, baskets, paintings, pottery, sculpture and other works. Most are full-time professionals who have won awards.

This year marks Santa Fe Indian Market’s 95th year. In the two days leading up to the market, artists entered their best pieces for jurying, and the Southwestern Association for American Indian Arts, the nonprofit that produces the market, holds a Friday night preview party of award winners that’s open to the public.

Online: The Southwestern Association for American Indian Arts, http://www.swaia.org.

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ANTIQUE AMERICAN INDIAN ART SHOW

Collectors and dealers of pre-1950s Native American art will descend on a venue at Santa Fe’s railyard starting Wednesday for the nation’s largest and longest-running tribal artifacts show. The event runs through Friday, with doors open between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. at El Museo Cultural de Santa Fe.

Scores of exhibitors set up in the museum, showing Navajo rugs, Plains Indian beadwork and kachinas. Some pieces can date back more than a century.

Online: http://www.antiqueindianartshow.com.

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INDIGENOUS FINE ART MARKET

This three-day market, also set at the Santa Fe Railyard near the city’s downtown, starts Thursday, featuring 300 artists. Founded three years ago, it’s uncertain whether what sprung up as an alternative to Santa Fe Indian Market will remain a mainstay for the city’s August art scene, but so far it has attracted Native American artisans whose works range from the street art of Douglas Miles, an Apache painter from San Carlos, Arizona, to Hopi wood carvings.

Online: http://www.indigefam.org

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ZUNI SHOW

Zuni Pueblo, a tiny village in western New Mexico, is home to some of the best indigenous jewelers and carvers in the country, with the community especially known for its fine, intricate inlay jewelry and tiny carvings. The carvings, referred to as Zuni fetishes, often take the shapes of animals that bear cultural significance for the tribe.

This year, a nonprofit gallery that benefits the artists of the pueblo will hold the two-day Zuni Show for the first time to complement the other shows underway in Santa Fe. It starts Saturday at the Scottish Rite Temple in downtown Santa Fe.

Organizers say more than 100 Zuni carvers, potters and jewelers will sell at the event. Robin Dunlap, president of the Keshi Foundation, says the show offers collectors a chance to connect with more Zuni artists in person and buy directly from them.

Online: http://www.keshi.com .

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