Folk Art Market Helps Artists Preserve Traditions And Innovate For The Future

Jul 11, 2019

Friday 7/12 8:30a: The 16th annual Santa Fe International Folk Art Market runs July 12-14. It will feature more than 150 master artists from 50 countries. As of 2018, the Market has generated more than $31 million in earnings for artists. That can have a tremendous impact, especially for artists from developing countries. Those earnings often support families and build infrastructure for entire communities.

We talk with:

  • Phoebe Lasoi of the Kitengela Women Olmakau Cooperative from Kenya. They create jewelry, baskets  and sandals with traditional Maasai beadwork. They are attending the market under the auspices of Acacia Moyo. That’s a non-profit that works alongside the Kitengela community to develop income-producing activities to prevent the sale of land, which is so important to Maasai culture.
  • Porfirio Gutierrez who comes from a long line of Zapotec weavers in Mexico. He is working to preserve those cultural traditions by using only natural dyes, rather than polluting chemical dyes that are now more commonly used. 
  • Rupa Trivedi is the founder of Adiv Pure Nature, a social enterprise in Mumbai that uses natural dyes often made from recycling flowers from temples as well as onions, coconuts and other plants to create vibrant cotton and silk textiles.
  • Keith Recker is creative director for the market, founder of Hand/Eye Magazine and author of the new book “True Colors: World Masters of Natural Dyes and Pigments.”