More than 100 of the finest Native American artists will gather on the Sharlot Hall Museum grounds Saturday and Sunday, July 12-13, for the 17th annual Prescott Indian Art Market.
These artisans, whose works have been juried for the show by American Indian artists, will bring traditional pieces, such as baskets and hand-woven blankets; jewelry; sculpture and carving; pottery and ceramics; and two-dimensional works, such as drawings, paintings and photography.
"Eighty percent of the artists are well known" because they show at prestigious venues, including the Santa Fe Indian Market and the Heard Museum in Phoenix, said Sandy Lynch, manager of the Prescott event. The artists in the Prescott Indian Art Market represent 26 different tribes or nations, she said. Their works are of "great beauty and great cultural heritage," she said. "Even the paintings reflect the cultural connection of a particular tribe."
This year's featured artist is Joe Cajero Jr. of the Jamez Pueblo in New Mexico. A graduate of the Institute of American Indian Art, he is best known for his clay originals and limited-edition bronzes.
Visitors to the art market can look forward to a full day of entertainment - dancers, musicians, fry bread and good art, Lynch said. A major highlight will be demonstrations by artists, themselves. One will be a Hopi basket weaver and another will be Navajo blanket weaver Nanabah Aragon.
"Nanabah is a high-ranking weaver," Lynch said, adding that all the art market's demonstrators have been doing this for a long time and "are renowned and well recognized."
"Extraordinary silversmith" Ernie Lister also will be on hand for the event, Lynch said. Works for sale range in price from affordable to expensive, she said.
Entertainment features the Prescott Powwow dancers who will demonstrate their talent; contemporary Indian music by Adrian Wall of the Jamez Pueblo; and the Maldonado Family of the Pascua-Yaqui people, who will sing and dance to the music of their flutes and the beats of their drums.
All of the Native American works in the show are original, Lynch said. "We are operating under the Indian Arts and Crafts Act," Lynch said. This federal law, enacted in 1993, guarantees truth in labeling, Lynch said. "We know the artists are from recognized Indian tribes in the U.S and that you are buying something special, unique and rare," she said.