This special category of the International Folk Art Market | Santa Fe will feature 28 artists who demonstrate excellence in innovation within their folk art traditions.

Santa Fe, New Mexico— Back by popular demand for the 2018 International Folk Art Market is the category of Innovation Inspiration. This Market initiative celebrates and encourages artists who are infusing their communities’ folk art traditions with personal expression, fresh perspectives and bold experimentation. In 2018, this special exhibition area features 28 artists whose works span the categories of Social Commentary, Design, and Re-use and Recycle.

Master contemporary artists who successfully made it through a rigorous, juried selection process have been chosen for this special exhibit area. Their work ranges from block-printed T-shirts from India, to beautiful upcycled, hand-felted sari scarves from Nepal, to stunning hooked rugs using recycled clothing from Guatemala, to colorful Zulu telephone wire plates and bowls from South Africa, to internationally lauded fashion out of Mexico. A total of 162 master artists from 53 countries will be in attendance at the International Folk Art Market this July 13, 14 and 15, 2018.

IFAM celebrates and encourages the innovation of global folk artists who are infusing their community’s cultural assets with personal expression, fresh perspectives, and bold experimentation. The category showcases new folk art forms, aesthetics, and uses that are shaping the past into the future. While the International Folk Art Market | Santa Fe continues to honor evolving living traditions and the humanity of the handmade, it now expands the philosophy of the Market to embrace younger creators, as well as artists whose vision expands their community’s aesthetic breadth.

Innovation Inspiration was made possible by a generous gift from JoAnn and Bob Balzer, both tireless arts advocates and folk art enthusiasts. “The Balzers’ deep commitment to innovation in the arts honors evolving traditions and has made it possible to usher in this exciting new category,” says Jeff Snell, CEO of International Folk Art Market (IFAM) the global nonprofit that produces the annual International Folk Art Market | Santa Fe. “Over the years, their vision and philanthropic support has elevated the lives and work of countless international folk artists.”

The International Folk Art Market | Santa Fe opens with a party on the evening of Friday, July 14, and runs through Sunday, July 16, 2017, at the beautiful Milner Plaza on Santa Fe’s Museum Hill. Tickets go on sale April 1, 2017. For detailed information and schedule of events, visit

International Folk Art Market | Santa Fe is held in partnership with the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs, Museum of International Folk Art, Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, Museum of New Mexico Foundation, and the City of Santa Fe.

For more information, interview requests, and photos, please contact Clare Hertel at 505-474-6783 or