This July the International Folk Art Alliance hosted its 13th International Folk Art Market, the largest of its kind in the world. The event connected over 20,000 shoppers with close to 200 artists from 60 countries, culminating in sales over 2.8 million. 90% of that goes home with the artisans. Global Women Artisans was fortunate enough to attend and shop for everything from stunning Rwanda’s Gahaya Links hand woven baskets to beautiful fine silk spun scarves from Uzbekistan. The variety of quality goods at prices ranging from $2 to $20,000 offered something for everyone.
Next year’s International Folk Art Market will incorporate some exciting changes. The Art Market is adding a new category, Excellence in Innovation.
“There’s whole new generation of creatives in every country who are using the traditional materials, methods and motifs of their parents and grandparents in new ways. What they make is grounded in the ancient ways of folk art, but their work expresses a new vision — one that evolves tradition into the present. Sometimes motifs morph into references to contemporary life, sometimes recycled materials take their place alongside more traditional ones, and sometimes a bit of 21st-century know how finds its way into the making or finishing of the product. At the end of the workday, what materializes is a creative, hybrid combination of the new and the old, the traditional and the innovative. At IFAA, we are eager to include these creative voices in our exploration of living traditions, community impact, and creating opportunities for folk artists all over the world.” Kieth Recker, IFAA board member
Traditional and innovating artists alike are encouraged to apply to be a part of 2017’s Art Market located in Santa Fe, New Mexico. To learn more about the many ways the IIAF works to aid artisans and promote folk art go to: https://www.folkartalliance.org/
The IIAF now offers an online application process. The submission deadline is October 1, 2016.
A limited number of financial assistance packages are available.
Whether you are a folk artist or someone who loves folk art as it conveys a community’s cultural identity, we hope to see you there next year!