The day dawned early and the crush of artists, patrons and collectors in La Fonda’s lobby buzzed with excitement.
Nearby, in the Santa Fe Room, Patricia Michaels’ models prepared for their much-anticipated fashion walk around the Plaza. The models breezed quickly through La Fonda’s Lobby and out into the sunshine. Wearing Patricia’s nature-inspired designs, they made their way through delighted crowds. Many people stopped in their tracks exclaiming that they thought the high-fashion procession was magical and fairy-like. Patricia is from Taos Pueblo and this year she made history by becoming the first Native designer to show her collection at New York Fashion week.
Out in the middle of the Plaza, one of my favorites, Ryan Singer had a prime booth spot. Singer was one of SWAIA’s Fellowship Winners this year and is using the funds to take his melding of pop and Native themes in painting to clay. But, it was his painting, Tuba City Spaceport that captured 2nd place at the 2011 Indian Market awards ceremony. By the way, Ryan’s work can be seen here at La Fonda in The Gathering Room on The Terrace. The piece is a triptych created in collaboration with two other Native painters, Mateo Romero and Marla Allison.
One of the biggest crowd-pleasers of the weekend took place in Cathedral Park. Sealaska and the Sealaska Heritage Institute participated in Indian Market for the first time, showcasing Southeast Alaska’s Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian cultures. The Mt. St. Elias Dancers stopped traffic in the park for an hour on Saturday morning and word spread throughout the Indian Market crowd not to miss the Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning performances.
Congratulations to SWAIA and all of this year’s participating artists. I can’t wait to see what is planned for next year!