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Inaugural Santa Fe International Folk Art Market at Arlington Draws Crowds to Downtown
By Lindsey Perkins Wade
Posted on June 19, 2017, June 19, 2017

On Saturday, people who stepped onto The Green at College Park in Downtown Arlington were transported to a bustling, global marketplace with traditional crafts, clothing, art and more from 35 countries.

Performers from around the world danced to sounds of music from their home countries, while shoppers marveled at the work of the artists and learned about other cultures. Many patrons walked around with colorful hand-woven baskets from Nigeria's Akeem Ayanniyi, filling them with purchases from other artists.

This was the site of the inaugural Santa Fe International Folk Art Market at Arlington, held June 16 and 17 on the campus of the University of Texas at Arlington.

Arlington community leaders teamed up with the International Folk Art Alliance to create Santa Fe International Folk Art Market's first Sister Market in the country. Arlington's market was co-chaired by Linda Dipert and Tony Pompa.

Dipert, a fan of the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market, said she was determined to bring the cultural event to Arlington after reading an economic report that demonstrated the benefits to both the artists and the host city. The IFAA's mission is to celebrate and preserve living folk art traditions while creating economic opportunities for and with folk artists worldwide.

"That's like doing mission work without leaving home," she said.

During the 12-hour market on Saturday, Uzbekistan designer Muhayo Aliyeva sold colorful, woven textiles featuring traditional Uzbek ikat patterns.

Aliyeva said about 10 women work in her workshop and even more help with weaving and embroidering the garments and accessories.

"The women are very happy because we constantly provide work for them," she said.

Aliyeva said she began coming to shows in America because people in Uzbekistan were not appreciative of the handmade work.

"This market is a great opportunity to expose our traditional garments and help us support the women who help us," she said.

  • Related article:
    Santa Fe International Folk Art Market to Bring Artists to Arlington from Around the World

VIDEO: Enjoy this fun time-lapse video from the International Folk Art Alliance Facebook page of artist Jayson Blondin, who did a live paint at opening night for Santa Fe International Folk Art Market at Arlington.

Source: International Folk Art Alliance

Downtown Arlington, Santa Fe International Folk Art Market at Arlington
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