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International Folk Art Market (IFAM) To Present Folk Art in the Time of COVID with the University of Texas at Austin

/EIN News/ -- Santa Fe, NM, Nov. 24, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The world-renowned International Folk Art Market (IFAM) is partnering with the University of Texas at Austin to present Folk Art in the Time of COVID—an in-depth, engaging presentation and Q & A on the ways in which folk artists are responding to the pandemic, how their livelihoods have been impacted and how they are lending a helping hand to their neighbors. As part of the virtual Winter Auction & Holiday Market—running November 28–December 6—the presentation will take place on Sunday, November 29 at 5pm virtually on the IFAM website.

The event will focus on the research of folklorist Dr. Suzanne Seriff and her team of nursing, public health, and international relations students from the University of Texas at Austin. The recipient of the President’s Award for Global Learning, the team has spent the last six months archiving, analyzing and exhibiting stories of folk and traditional artists from around the globe—many from the IFAM family—to bring to light their stories of preservation in times of crisis. 

“Artists have been among the most affected industries during the pandemic,” said Stuart Ashman, IFAM’s CEO. “With the cancellation of markets, events and tourist trips, many international folk artists have been severely struggling to feed their families. However, even in the middle of this hardship, Dr. Seriff and her team have brought to light the beauty and perseverance of the artists’ heart through their stories. Even in the midst of chaos and uncertainty, many of these artists are leading the way to provide aid for their neighbors. They are the voices seeking to educate on prevention and treatment, document the stories of the pandemic, and help their communities—all while working to retain their livelihood, their health and the wellbeing of their families. We invite everyone to join the presentation and hear these incredible stories of heroism and ingenuity.”

Stories will include interviews conducted with over 20 artists in countries, including Australia, Cuba, Dominican Republic, East Timor Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Haiti, India, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Mexico, Namibia, Nepal, Peru, Rwanda, South Africa, and the United States. Throughout the presentation, attendees will hear incredible stories of San beadworkers in rural Namibia who mobilized in March to distribute “tippy taps” and hygiene training to their largely illiterate neighbors; a group of Hmong weavers in Laos, who transformed their handmade textiles into masks for communities in need and their global clientele; and a retablo maker in Peru who drew on his talents to  document his communities’ stories of covid-related evictions, food relief lines, funerals, and testing sites through his intricately created shadow box scenes.

 For more information, visit

Joanie Griffin
                  International Folk Art Market