- By Tamara Ikenberg
LOS ANGELES –– As the first Virtual Santa Fe Indian Market launched last week, another major annual Indigenous market is announcing its pandemic-prompted jump into virtual territory.
The 2020 American Indian Arts Marketplace, originally scheduled to take place in November at the Autry Museum of the American West in Los Angeles, will be reimagined as Autrey Marketplace Online at a date yet to be determined, according to a statement from Autry president and CEO W. Richard West Jr. (Southern Cheyenne)
The Southern California fair usually attracts thousands of shoppers and about 200 artists from more than 40 Native nations, selling a slew of sculpture, pottery, beadwork, basketry, photography, paintings, jewelry, textiles, wooden carvings, mixed-media works and more.
“While we fully acknowledge that nothing can replicate being at Marketplace weekend in person, we are confident that the Autry Marketplace Online will be a rich, engaging digital opportunity that will allow thousands of additional visitors to participate, regardless of where they live,” West said in the statement. “I, too, will miss seeing and socializing with longstanding and close artist friends. I look forward to the challenge and reward of letting even more people around the country and world feel that same sense of community and camaraderie.”
In the meantime, the Autry wants input and suggestions from artists about how they should go about transforming the physical market into a digital showcase. Artists with questions, comments or wanting to share ideas can email the Autry at [email protected].
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