Santa Fe Indigenous Center brings communalism to the holiday craft fair
As the season of high-intensity shopping once again looms over Santa Fe, folks aiming to create social impact with their gifts are hunting down wares from local creators of color. But in the wake of SWIAIA’s increasingly fraught sway over Santa Fe’s Indigenous art scene, it can be tricky to suss out how and where to appropriately support Native artists outside the internet. That’s especially true for those of us with limited budgets (the Indian Market artists who make five figures per piece absolutely deserve every cent, but not everyone can swing those prices)—or for people trying to prioritize organizations founded directly by Indigenous people.
The Santa Fe Indigenous Center’s Holiday Bazaar is the newest and perhaps most accessible answer. The center—which is founded and run entirely by and for Native folks—may be best known for its bi-weekly food distribution events, which aim to reduce food insecurity for Indigenous people in Santa Fe County. The center also offers emergency financial assistance, collects mental health resources and connects those in need to specialized services. And among the multitude of holiday craft markets and pop-ups, the organization’s first annual Bazaar stands out as much for the inclusive ethos it represents as for the art it offers.
“This a unique economic opportunity that we’re providing for our people that live in Santa Fe County. We’ve opened the show up to any type of Native crafts. It could be [anything from] jewelry, pottery, paintings, to holiday arts and crafts and baked goods,” Director Caren Gala (Laguna, Taos and Nambé Pueblo) tells SFR, noting that among its roughly 40 booths there will be plenty of opportunities to fill up on Frito pies. “We’re charging a minimal booth fee of $30, which goes to the organization, but as far as sales, artists will keep 100%. We’ll also have a booth for the center; people donate to us all the time, so we’re also going to be selling some of the art that we’ve gathered over the year.” (Siena Sofia Bergt)
Indigenous Holiday Bazaar: 9 am-4 pm Saturday, Dec. 10. Free. Santa Fe Indigenous Center, 1420 Cerrillos Rd, (505) 660-4210
There’s a certain stillness that only comes with a blanket of fresh snow. While the city has yet to experience deep snow this winter, deep stillness is already achievable. The Santa Fe Women’s Ensemble presents In the Still of December as part of its 42nd season. Expect exquisite execution of familiar carols from Austria, Germany, France and Wales (think: “Still, Still, Still,” “In Dulci Jubilo;” “Bring A Torch, Jeanette, Isabella;” and “Deck the Hall”), along with other winter-themed tunes. Plus, hear the world premiere of “A Christmas Telling of St. Bride of the Isles,” commissioned by the ensemble from composer Sarah Jaysmith. The bride in question is said to have been transported from Ireland across the sea by angels to attend the birth of Jesus over yonder in Bethlehem. What a ride! (Julie Ann Grimm)
Santa Fe Women’s Ensemble: In the Still of December: 3 pm, Saturday, Dec. 10 and 17, Sunday, Dec. 11 and 18. $25. First Presybterian Church, 208 Grant Ave. (505) 303-8648. sfwe.org
Oh, Santa Fe, where we have entire institutions dedicated to art—like the aptly named Santa Fe Art Institute, that glorious bastion of progressive and thoughtful creations, residencies, shows and so on. And yet, we can’t shake this inkling that not everyone knows what’s going on over there. Luckily, you’ll find an open house event this weekend, complete with a site-specific musical/performance work from North Carolina-based artist Kamara Thomas dubbed Tularosa: An American Dreamtime. You’ll learn a thing or two about how the institute impacts our town’s arts and faraway artists; you’ll also get a chance to meet folks working within its hallowed halls, like locals Calixte Raifsnider, Laura Yu Hu and others. (Alex De Vore)
Holiday Open House: 5-8 pm Friday, Dec. 9. Free. Santa Fe Art Institute, 1600 St. Michael’s Drive, sfai.org
In lieu of a traditional gift guide wherein SFR staffers would write kicky little things about what shops to peruse, see instead this week’s main pick and the very one you’re reading—this one dedicated to the seventh annual String of Lights market. It works like this: A veritable cavalcade of arts, crafts and service-based booths descend upon Tumbleroot for the rootin-est’, tootin’-est bunch of locally- and artisan-made stuff you can find anywhere. Sure, you could gift a slightly larger television or, like, a bathrobe, but wouldn’t you rather support the local makers, alchemists, stationers, artists and such from Matron Design, Tia Coco Chocolates, Heidi K Brandow and beyond? Yeah, you would. (ADV)
String of Lights: Noon-5 pm Saturday, Dec. 10 and Sunday, Dec. 11. Free (but pay for gifts). Tumbleroot Brewery & Distillery, 2791 Agua Fría St., (505) 303-3808