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Cultural Survival Bazaar: 47th season celebrating indigenous arts

Friday, December 8, 2023

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Photo Credit Cultural Survival Bazaars

Cultural Survival, the organization dedicated to Indigenous Peoples’ rights, is delighted to announce the return of its cherished holiday event, the Cultural Survival Bazaar. This annual celebration of Indigenous arts and cultures is scheduled to take place from December 14 to 17, 2023, at the Prudential Center in Boston.

For decades, the Cultural Survival Bazaars have been a beloved tradition during the holiday season in the Boston area. The inaugural Bazaar in 1975 at Harvard University aimed to educate the public about Indigenous Peoples and the challenges they faced.

These Bazaars offer the public a unique opportunity to engage with Indigenous communities and explore diverse worldviews. Showcasing a vibrant array of arts and crafts from around the globe, shoppers can discover distinctive and meaningful gifts during the holiday season. By purchasing arts and crafts from Indigenous artists and cooperatives, shoppers contribute to the preservation of ancient traditions and ways of life in Indigenous communities worldwide. The Bazaars annually generate nearly $500,000 to support Indigenous artists, performers, and projects benefiting Indigenous communities globally.

Admission to the event is free, inviting the greater Boston community to celebrate Indigenous talent and traditions through handmade art, demonstrations, music, and dance. Explore jewelry, clothing, accessories, housewares, paintings, sculptures, and more from Indigenous artists and cooperatives representing over 20 countries. Notable participating artists include wampum artist Hartman Deetz (Mashpee Wampanoag), wire artist Bernard Domingo (Shona) from Zimbabwe, pysanka (painted eggs) artist Ganna Nepyivoda (Hutsul) from Ukraine, cashmere artisan Akhtar Mir (Kashmiri), and textile artist Timoteo Ccarita (Quechua) from Peru.

Attendees can also enjoy live music and cultural performances by renowned individuals such as actor, teacher, performer, and artist Annowan Weeden (Mashpee Wampanoag/Pequot/Narragansett); musician, composer, and master flutist Juan Lazaro Mandola (Quechua); fancy dancer Tia-Alexi Roberts (Narragansett); and the Andean folk band New Inca Son. Daily performance schedules are available here.

Candyce Testa (Pequot), Cultural Survival Bazaar Events Manager, reflects on Indigenous art in the 21st century as a blend of ancestral knowledge and contemporary realities, weaving unique stories of Indigenous continuity. She emphasizes that Indigenous art showcases the dynamic nature of culture, with individuals and communities evolving over time, collectively deciding what to preserve and what to let go. The art featured at the Cultural Survival Bazaar celebrates the identity of these Indigenous artists today.

Experience an atmosphere that honors ancient crafts and traditions while providing an opportunity to learn from and connect with Indigenous artists. This holiday season, embrace the spirit of shopping Indigenous!

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