98-Year-Old Santa Fe Indian Market Celebrates Female Strength & Resilience

Congresswoman Deb Haaland Guest of Honor at annual fundraising Gala

June 1, 2019
Santa Fe, New Mexico

The Southwestern Association for Indian Arts (SWAIA) (, the non-profit that produces the world-renowned Santa Fe Indian Market every August is pleased to announce that its 98th annual event will honor Native women.

Three major components of Indian Market will promote the theme, female strength and resilience: the Native Cinema Showcase, IM: EDGE curated contemporary show, and the annual fundraising Gala.

The Gala, held on Saturday, August 17, will be titled “Rise and Remember: Honoring the Resilience of Native Women.” The event’s guest of honor will be NM Representative Deb Haaland (Laguna Pueblo).

“This year we seek to honor our sisters who have passed, who have gone missing and/or were murdered and those who are with us fighting for better tomorrows,” says Elizabeth Kirk (Isleta Pueblo/Navajo), SWAIA Board Chair, “and at the same time, celebrating our up-and-coming generations.”

Attendees to the Gala will be encouraged to wear red, showing solidarity with missing and murdered Indigenous women. A series of 25 hand drums will be painted/decorated by female artists— including Ms. Haaland— and will be auctioned. SWAIA will share 25% of the proceeds with the Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women in Albuquerque. Among the 25 artists participating are Catherine Blackhorse (Blackfoot), Kathleen Wall (Jemez), and Shondinii Walters (Navajo). Special guest Laura Ortman (White Mountain Apache), a violinist featured in the 2019 Whitney Biennial, will play during the reception.

The Gala will be held at Santa Fe’s Convention Center, moving from La Fonda Hotel where it has been held for years. The move will provide more space, and the opportunity for guests to visit IM: EDGE, a curated contemporary exhibit— also at the Convention Center. IM: EDGE, now in its 5th year, seeks to push the boundaries of Native art and explore new mediums, this year focusing on the female experience.

The 19th Native Cinema Showcase, presented in partnership with the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian ( during Indian Market, has several female-centric films on the schedule, including “Warrior Women” and “Vai.”

Attendees of Market will be able to purchase special Strength Merchandise, featuring the work of emerging artist Tokeya Richardson (Oglala Lakota).

“[Women] are the authority of the household and the backbone of all the people. As a male dancer, when I come around and see our women (young and old) on the edge dancing, protecting us and standing watch while we dance — I see my grandmothers, my moms, my aunties, my wife, my sisters, my daughters, my nieces and my future generations — that gives me strength. ‘Swing and sway ladies! Swing and sway!’” – Tokeya Richardson

The 98th Santa Fe Indian Market will take place on August 17 and 18, 2019, with the participation of over 1,000 artists from more than 200 federally recognized tribes. A full schedule of Indian Market events can be found at

Amanda Crocker

About SWAIA:
The Southwestern Association for Indian Arts (SWAIA) is a non-profit organization supporting Native American arts and culture. It creates economic and cultural opportunities for Native American artists by producing and promoting the Santa Fe Indian Market, the biggest and most prestigious Indian art event in the world since 1922.

SWAIA plays an ongoing role in supporting Native American arts and culture year-round, cultivating excellence and innovation across traditional and non-traditional art forms and developing programs and events that support, promote, and honor Native artists.