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SWAIA Announces Centennial Fashion Designers

SWAIA/Santa Fe Indian Market Centennial


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE— The Southwestern Association for Indian Arts (SWAIA), the non-profit organization that produces the annual Santa Fe Indian Market, is pleased to announce SWAIA’s Centennial Indigenous Fashion Show designers.
The 2022 fashion programming is expanding over two days, showcasing two full fashion shows with the first premiering on Saturday, August 20, at the Centennial Gala Party: Shiny Drop. The finale Indigenous Fashion Show takes place on Sunday, August 21, at the Santa Fe Convention Center. Sunday’s fashion show is immediately followed by an exclusive Trunk Show, limited to ticket holders of the SWAIA Fashion Show. Guests will have the opportunity to buy and order directly from their favorite designers.

Designer Jamie Okuma, featuring model Moonstar; SWAIA runway 2021.
Photo © Tira Howard for SWAIA

Amber-Dawn Bear Robe, who produces the fashion events, states “The long-term goal is to grow the fashion programming into a SWAIA Fashion Week. Last year we announced a partnership between SWAIA Fashion, Indigenous Fashion Arts (IFA), Vancouver Fashion Week (VFW) and the newly established Supernaturals Modelling Agency. All partners will be back this year and we hoping to announce a Santa Fe Indigenous Fashion Week soon.”

Details are available on the new SWAIA fashion website at  swaia.org/fashion . Tickets on sale soon!

The 2022 participating fashion designers are:

  • Jason Baerg (Cree Métis)
  • Himikalas / Pamela Baker (Kwaguilth/ Sqaumish)
  • Catherine Blackburn (Dene) and Melanie LeBlanc (European and Dene)
  • Orlando Dugi (Navajo)
  • Korina Emmerich (Puyallup and Nisqually)
  • Sho Esquiro (Kaska Dene/ Cree)
  • Lauren GoodDay (Arikara, Hidatssa, Blackfeet, Plains Cree)
  • Dorothy Grant (Haida)
  • Lesley Hampton (Anishinaabe)
  • Ursula Hudson (Tlingit)
  • Patricia Michaels (Taos Pueblo)
  • Skawennati (Mohawk)
  • Jamie Okuma (Luiseño, Wailaki, Okinawan, and Shoshone-Bannock)
  • Cody Sanderson (Navajo)
  • Yolanda Skelton (Gitxsan)
  • Adrian Standing Elk Pinnecoose (Navajo/Southern Ute)

Concurrent with SWAIA’s Centennial fashion programming, the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts (MoCNA) is launching an exhibition entitled Art of Indigenous Fashion, curated by Bear Robe. Opening Thursday, August 18, the show features many of the designers who have been on the SWAIA runway.

M E D I A  C O N T A C T
Audrey N Rubinstein
The Metta Agency

About SWAIA Fashion:
SWAIA Fashion encompasses the annual Fashion Shows produced during, and soon beyond, the Santa Fe Indian Market by curator and Indigenous art historian Amber-Dawn Bear Robe. Since 2014, Bear Robe has produced and directed SWAIA’s fashion programming.

Supernaturals Modelling



January 2022 Press Highlights

Website Gives Santa Fe high marks for art scene by Teya Vitu


“I think it plays an important role in bringing people here and reminding people who have been here what an amazing destination Santa Fe is,” he said.

Art is Santa Fe’s major virtual player with online sales, though the pandemic has brought the Santa Fe Indian Market and International Folk Art Market into the online game, and even performing arts groups added digital content.

“A lot of people shop for art without even coming here,” Randall said. “[The Arty Areas report and Travel + Leisure] are good for awareness. It’s also very important to let people know there is a major market here they should look at whether virtually or in person.”


22 Reasons to Visit New Mexico in 2022 by Lanee Lee


Indigenous Art
Santa Fe
Celebrating its centennial in 2022, Santa Fe Indian Market is the world’s oldest Indigenous art market featuring hundreds of Native American artists’ work, from beadwork to bolo ties and more. Held the third weekend of August at Santa Fe’s main plaza, the art market’s festivities include Indigenous fashion shows, Native American dances and silent art auctions.

For more art immersion in Santa Fe, don’t miss the New Mexico Capitol Art Collection featuring more than 600 pieces of artwork by New Mexican and Southwestern artists (the pieces are on display in public spaces at the State Capitol Complex).

Kim Peone | Executive Director of SWAIA

Wake Up Call’s MK Mendoza speaks with Executive Director, Kim Peone

Indigenous Resilience Transforms Into Success and Poetic Justice at Virtual Santa Fe Indian Market

  OCT 22, 2020
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Kim Peone | Colville Confederated Tribes / Eastern Band of Cherokee IndiansWake Up Call’s MK Mendoza speaks with Executive Director of SWAIA, Kim Peone about the success experienced at this year’s virtual Santa Fe Indian Market, now placing it in the lead as a model for helping artists survive the pandemic. Once again the indigenous community shines with resilience: A moment of poetic justice as we pay homage to a population American history has not only attempted to conquer but all too often criminally neglected.


Support of CommUNITY Learning Network during 2020 Virtual Market


Community Learning Network Mobilized Volunteers and Interns to

Help SWAIA Artists Create Websites  


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 1, 2020; Santa Fe, NM: Community Learning Network (CLN) mobilized an informal and formal network and coordinated more than 40 interns and volunteers (meet a few of them here) from a range of partner organizations including Stonehill College, Villanova University, University of Portland, University of New Mexico, and Santa Fe Community College (SFCC), as well as interns from the PROTEC (www.protecsantafe.com), hosted through SFCC Continuing Education and Contract Training program and supported by the County of Santa Fe.  

 The CLN interns and volunteers were introduced to the SWAIA juried artisand SWAIA staff, matched with artists, and then worked one-on-one with the artists by phone, text, email, and zoom to help them build and launch their website, establish and/or connect PayPal payment processing, and engage with promotions and social media opportunities.  

 CommUNITY Learning Network supported this initiative thanks to support from New Mexico TechWorks and the “1000 Website in 1000 Days” project, the TechHire working group of the Opportunity Santa Fe Birth to Career program at the Santa Fe Community Foundation, the Pueblo Connect initiative supported by the National Science Foundation, the Internet Society and Internet Society New Mexico Chapter, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos Major Subcontrators Consortium and New Mexico Community Foundation, New Mexico Gas Company, New Mexico Oil and Gas Association, Verizon, Facebook Career Connections pilot training and paid internship program with support from New Mexico Workforce Solutions, Nusenda, and the City of Santa Fe Office of Economic Development.  

 Extra special thanks and acknowledgement to Elizabeth Eppley, the AmeriCorps Vista member that worked with CommUNITY Learning Network as an Economic Development Coordinator thanks to support from the North Central New Mexico Economic Development Department.  

 Eppley did an outstanding job coordinating the volunteer efforts. She has continued to support SWAIA artists by creating weekly Facebook posts featuring the work and websites of SWAIA artists, plus she coordinated a virtual meetup with three of the artists on zoom during Global Entrepreneurship Week in November 2020 (www.gewsantafe.com)  

 For More Information about CommUNITY Learning Network, please visit: https://www.communitylearningnetwork.org