Saturday, July 31, 2010

Santa Fe Museum Hosts Exhibit on Empowering Women

Members of the Centro de Textiles Tradicionales del Cusco, courtesy of Nilda Callañaupa Álvarez and the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market

By Graham Ross Golden 

The Museum of International Folk Art in Santa Fe is hosting an exhibit entitled Empowering Women: Artisan Cooperatives That Transform Communities. The display, which will be up until Jan. 2, is housed in the museum's Gallery of Conscience

I had the opportunity to view the showing last week.  It is a small display but very well done and well worth viewing if you are already making a trip to Santa Fe for any reason between now and January.

It does a wonderful job of illuminating the process of artisan cooperatives in sustaining just economic development and addressing other pressing social issues as well (war, HIV/AIDS genocide etc.).  This showing, with its focus on women, also brings to the fore many issues and challenges facing women as well as triumphs in the developing world. 

The exhibition highlights include weaving, beadwork, painting, baskets, embroidery and other traditional folk arts from Bolivia, Rwanda, Peru, Swaziland, India, Kenya, Laos, South Africa, Morocco and Nepal.

All of the cooperatives featured in the exhibit had artist booths at the 2010 Santa Fe International Folk Art Market on July 9-11.

It is a challenging but inspirational exhibition, at least from my experience of it. I felt it was a good tool for more tangibly encountering the fair trade movement and those communities it impacts. 

Read more about the exhibit

(The author was offsite coordinator for Peacecraft in 2007-2008)

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