Santa Fe International Folk Art Market

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Mentor to Market

M2M_logo_smThe Mentor to Market curriculum provides business and marketing workshops, hands-on skill building, peer-to-peer (artist-to-artist) learning, and long-term support for folk artists and their organizations that respects diversity and integrates global entrepreneurship business training strategies, to assist them improve their livelihoods and participate more effectively in the global Marketplace. UNESCO and the Kellogg Foundation have both been valuable partners in providing funding to plan and implement the Market’s educational programs during past years. Over the last nine years, the Market has offered business-development training to over 800 artists and their representatives from more than 35 countries. They are then able to apply immediately the skills and knowledge they gained in a “learn and do” method in the marketplace. Through the M2M Program, as well as the hands-on participation in the Market itself, artists develop valuable new skills to improve their businesses, build assets and gain economic security for themselves and their families. They also acquire the confidence to be successful in an international marketplace.

M2M Programs:

Preparing for Your First Market

Preparing for Your First Market teaches international artists, new to the Folk Art Market, sales and marketing skills needed to promote their work at the Folk Art Market and internationally and build sustainable incomes for themselves in their home countries.

Artists participating in these workshops learn about pricing; customer service; marketing through telling your story; displaying their art; and a chance to have a Q&A session with experienced Market artists.

Presenters range from economic development professionals to gallery and shop owners, educators and business consultants.

Preparing for the Export Marketplace

Preparing for the Export Marketplace is and advanced educational workshop available to alumni Market artists.  It is designed for artists and their organizations interested in reaching new U.S. wholesale buyers with their traditional craft and folk art collections.  During this one-day workshop  key topics are addressed to prepare artists in meeting the expectations of U.S. wholesale buyers and communicating their unique art and culture.  Topics include profiles of U.S. wholesale buyers and buyer expectations, export distribution channels and export and wholesale pricing margins, components of successful wholesale products, and marketing and promotional materials to effectively convey theartists’ story and develop sales.  Through visual presentations, panel discussions, small working groups and exercises artists will acquire practical tools, checklists and recommendations to enter the U.S. wholesale marketplace. Participants will gain valuable knowledge about the structure of the U.S. wholesale market and how to develop long-term relationships with U.S. wholesale buyers that generate new income while preserving traditional crafts and promoting cultural heritage. A select group of these folk artists are paired with a long term mentor for a year or more, to create an export marketing plan and prepare them for a sustainable export opportunity.

Click here to see the 2012 slideshow.

For more information, please contact Ahdina Zunkel, Director of Special Projects at

International Folk Art Market Collection at Dallas Market Center

For the third year, the Dallas Market Center (DMC) has invited the Folk Art Market to participate in the Total Home & Gift Market from June 19-23, 2013, just prior to the Market in Santa Fe.  Since 1957, DMC has been a wholesale marketplace.  Today it holds more than 50 markets each year, and retailers from all 50 states and 78 countries source products conducting over $8 billion in annual transactions.  This year 24 Market artists and their organizations representing over 15 countries will participate in this exciting market, the International Folk Art Market Collection.

As part of the support of the Dallas Market Center, the International Folk Art Market Collectionwill be situated in a high visibility premium location, on the first floor of the World Trade Center,Hall of Nations.  More than 50,000 attendees attend the June show.  To enhance sales opportunities, DMC will provide direct marketing in key publications (value priceless), including their magazine The Source (circulated to 50,000 wholesale buyers), listing in their directory, targeted emails with artist profiles and photos of their work, 5000 Collection bags for buyers, a select number of ad placements in key DMC publications, as well as trade media relations.  Additionally, the DMC is generously underwriting the cost of each booth (value $3,000+) and hosting a special VIP Preview Party.

DMC will allow both wholesale ordering, as well as immediate sales of one-of-a-kind items at wholesale prices.  The wholesale orders will provide the artists with long-term year-round buyer relationships.  The immediate sales will allow the buyers to experience the excitement of  “one-of-a-kind” buying, give retailers a chance to test product in their stores in hopes that they follow-up with online wholesale orders to be shipped, give artists the opportunity to recover some of their expenses, and relieve some artists from the typical 30 to 90-day wholesale ordering deadline.  The Folk Art Market staff and volunteers will handle the immediate sales purchases.

This program falls under the Market’s advanced artist educational programs, as a “hands-on” experience designed for alumni artists and their organizations who are ready and able to participate in a wholesale market. The training will cover topics such as buyer expectations, components of selecting an export collection, export and wholesale pricing distribution margins, and marketing and promotional materials to effectively convey the artists’ stories and develop sales.  Materials developed by ByHand Consulting, will be prepared and distributed via email before the market, as well as during an on-site 2-hour session entitled “Wholesale Marketing Tips”.

The International Folk Art Market Collection at DMC will accomplish the following objectives:  1) offer buyers unique products not found in other gifts stores, 2) support the livelihoods of international artists and their communities and the preservation of cultural traditions, 3) heighten the importance of handmade high quality artisan-produced goods to help build sustainable livelihoods, and 4) provide buyers the opportunity to have direct contact with the artist.

We see this as a very exciting opportunity for Folk Art Market artists to meet and make contacts with buyers from across the U.S.  It will strengthen participants’ capacity to manage their businesses and broaden access to designers and retailers interested in incorporating the hand-made into home décor and fashion accessories.

> 2013 Collection Participants

> To Apply: download application here (.pdf)

Youth Programs

The Market also distributes tickets through the Pueblo children’s program at the Santa Fe Opera to encourage families from Pojoaque and other northern Pueblos to attend and participate in the Market’s activities.  We also provide tickets to other Santa Fe youth programs including Big Brothers, Big Sisters; Warehouse 21; National Dance Institute of New Mexico; and Site Santa Fe.

This expanded outreach provides access for young audiences to attend the Market that normally would not have the opportunity.

Passport for Kids Project

Beginning in 2008, the Market has provided a passport for children during Family Day on Sunday.

The Passport contains a world map as well as pages for each of the participating countries. Children can visit the artists’ booths and receive a stamp from the artist on their country of origin.  This engages children in the Market, providing them an opportunity to interact with the artists and a good introduction to world geography.

> Learn more about the Passport Program (.pdf)

Art Team

Senior level art students, recruited from colleges and local high schools, were selected to participate in the first Art Team project.  In 2007, students were paid a stipend through a grant from a private foundation to help create the ambiance for the Market, including decorating and embellishing the tents, the trees, and the Market surroundings.  At the end of the project, the students were asked to create an artwork based on their experience at the Market and the international artists they met. The creative works that resulted varied from photo collages to assemblages.

The Santa Fe International Folk Art Market, a non-profit organization, produces the largest international folk art market in the world, and our success led to Santa Fe’s designation as a UNESCO City of Folk Art.