August 10, 2012

Kate Lewis Returns to the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market

Kate Lewis, a long-time MSLO employee, travels frequently, as you already may know, and recently revisited the fantastic Santa Fe International Folk Art Market and shares this blog with all of us.

Each year, I am drawn back to Santa Fe, New Mexico, to attend the International Folk Art Market.  It is a special time for me to spend three days looking at the best market for international folk art crafts and to visit with the talented artists.  This year’s theme was “REDefine What Matters”.  The first three letters are emphasized in “redefine” because Red was the festive color scheme of the Market and at the opening party many guests wore their festive red clothing and accessories.  This theme was chosen to remind participants that through humanities capacity, we can find joy in all our common bonds.  It is rewarding to listen to the artists tell their stories about how and where their crafts are made and the impact selling their crafts, at this unique event, has had on their lives and their communities.  The individual stories become integral to this folk art experience and I think of the artists’ faces and their stories each time I look at my purchases and photographs.  Many of these artists were making their debut at the market.  Please visit the market’s website to read the special stories of each artist.  Gathering my colorful flowers and crafts purchases, I always leave the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market knowing that I have been able to share wonderful crafts, cultures and special stories with 170 artists from 50 countries and knowing that the lives of so many women and children are being improved by their work and by this market.