Indigenous art. Indigenous perspectives.

Santa Fe Indian Market 2023 Winners

Jennifer Tafoya

Jennifer Tafoya (Santa Clara Pueblo) accepting the Best of Show award. Photo: Stacy Pratt, PhD (Mvskoke) for FAAM.

“Never in my entire life would I have thought this would happen,” confessed Jennifer Montoya (Santa Clara Pueblo), Best of Show winner at the Santa Fe Indian Art Market. “The title is Caught by Surprise, and I am definitely caught by surprise! I am extremely thankful.”

The 4.25-by-4.25-inch sgraffito pot displays an incredibly intricate wraparound scene of dinosaurs, in unusual play on scale. The multi-hued images are incised into the glossy black surface. This delicate piece, built from local clays that Tafoya mined and processed by hand, might rank among the most diminutive Best of Show winners in SWAIA history.

“I’ve been making pottery since I was 6 years old, but I didn’t start taking it seriously until I was 16 or so,” Tafoya told FAAM. “I’ve been coming to Market with my family since I was 18, but I didn’t think my love of drawing would get me to this point. I’m just ecstatic.”

Competition pieces were awe-inspiring in their diversity and beauty as artists from so many backgrounds and regions expressed their unique visions in clay, stone, metal, glass, canvas, and textiles.

The 101st annual Santa Fe Indian Market launched its second century on surer footing, led by experienced SWAIA executive director, Jamie Schulze. The competition went smoothly, which bodes well for a great market.

Click on thumbnails to see larger image.

Best of Show Winner

Jennifer Tafoya (Santa Clara Pueblo), Caught by Surprise, etched black pot, hand-dug Santa Clara Clay, coiled, stone polished, etched, painted with hand-dug natural clay paint, 4¼ x 4¼ in.

Jennifer Tafoya

Best of Show and Classification, Pottery: Jennifer Tafoya (Santa Clara Pueblo). Photo: Tira Howard / SWAIA.

Classification Winners

The 2023 SWAIA Santa Fe Indian Market Best of Classification winners are as follows.

I. Jewelry: Lyndon Tsosie (Navajo) for Untitled (Sea Turtle Pendant)

Lyndon Tsosie

Best of Classification, Jewelry: Lyndon Tsosie (Navajo). Photo: Tira Howard / SWAIA.

II. Pottery: Jennifer Tafoya (Santa Clara Pueblo) for Caught By Surprise

III. Painting/Drawings/Graphics/Photography: Daniel HorseChief (Cherokee Nation/Pawnee) for Judgement Day Manifest, The Greasy Grass 1976 Keough’s Stand/em>

Daniel HorseChief

Best of Classification, 2-D: Daniel HorseChief (Cherokee Nation/Pawnee). Photo: Tira Howard / SWAIA.

IV. Wooden Pueblo Figurative Carvings and Sculpture: Arthur Holmes Jr. (Hopi) for Talavi Morning Katsina

Arthur Holmes

Best of Classification, Wooden Pueblo Figurative Carving & Sculpture: Arthur Holmes Jr. (Hopi). Photo: Tira Howard / SWAIA.

V. Sculpture: Ryan Benally (Navajo) for Dreamscape of Love

Ryan Benally

Best of Classification, Sculpture: Ryan Benally (Navajo). Photo: Tira Howard / SWAIA.

VI. Textiles: TahNibaa Naataanii (Navajo) for Autumn Rose Carnival

TahNibaa Naataanii

Best of Classification, Textiles: TahNibaa Naataanii (Navajo). Photo: Tira Howard / SWAIA.

VII. Diverse Arts: Victoria Adams (Southern Cheyenne) for Sun Dance on Muddy Creek

Victoria Adams

Best of Classification, Diverse: Victoria Adams (Southern Cheyenne). Photo: Tira Howard / SWAIA.

VIII. Beadwork/Quillwork: Jackie Larson Bread (Blackfeet) for We Are Fierce, horse mask

Best of Classification, Beadwork/ Quillwork: Jackie Larson Bread (Blackfeet). Photo: Tira Howard / SWAIA.

IX. Youth: Aydrian James Day (Ho-Chunk/Lakota/Anishinaabe) for Father’s Love (Ate Iyocicila)

Aydrian Day

Best of Classification, Youth: Aydrian Day (Ho-Chunk/Anishinaabe/Lakota). Photo: Tira Howard / SWAIA.

X. Moving Images: suspended

XI. Basketry:  Carol Emarthle-Douglas (Northern Arapaho/Seminole) for Sky Woman Watches

Carol Emarthle Douglas

Best of Classification, Basketry: Carol Emarthle Douglas (Northern Arapaho/Seminole). Photo: Tira Howard / SWAIA.

Special Award Winner

Special awards included the IAIA Distinguished Alumni Award that went to Terran Last Gun (Blackfeet), and Native American Art Magazine‘s Award of Excellence went to Jason Garcia (Santa Clara Pueblo).


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