Editor’s Letter | Celebrating Indian Market

Pots by LuAnn Tafoya, pottery, southwest art.
Pots by LuAnn Tafoya

By Margaret L. Brown

We are pleased to join with Starlight Publishing in Albuquerque, NM, and the Southwestern Association for Indian Arts the organizer of the Santa Fe Indian Market to bring you this special edition of Southwest Art. This issue is the official guide to Indian Market, and in it we introduce you to more than 40 contemporary Native American artists. We’ve also included three buyer’s guides filled with tips on collecting kachinas, textiles and rugs, jewelry, baskets, and more, as well as a guide to visiting Santa Fe that takes you to the city’s hot spots.

Native American art at the turn of the century is a study in both adherence to tradition and the stretching of artistic boundaries. The two themes emerge in these pages, from LuAnn Tafoya’s classic Santa Clara pots to Ben Harjo’s boldly colorful, abstracted paintings. “My mother [Margaret Tafoya] did things the traditional way and so did my grandmother,” says Tafoya. “If you keep up the traditional forms there’s a life to it.” Harjo, on the other hand, prefers nontraditional expression. “It’s a style I’m not bored with, something I can experiment with,” he says.

Potter Diego Romero covers similar ground in a question-and-answer session with his brother, painter Mateo Romero. Says Diego, “Native American art has left the dock. It’ll be interesting to see, once it makes its round trip, where it winds up.”

Whether you’re traveling to Santa Fe this August for Indian Market or simply taking a virtual tour via these pages, join us in celebrating the 79th Indian Market and all of the artists who are continuing the traditions of excellence and innovation in Native American art. Thanks to Starlight Publishing and SWAIA for all of their efforts in bringing this issue to life.

Featured in August 2000