The New Mexico Arts & Crafts Fair started in 1962 and was held in Old Town Albuquerque as
part of the 50th Anniversary celebration of New Mexico’s statehood. New Mexico Governor Ed
Mecham and Potter Maria Martinez were the ribbon cutters at the first event. A few years later
the fair was moved to the State Fairgrounds when it outgrew Old Town, and has been held there
ever since.

The New Mexico Arts & Crafts fair recognizes that the arts are a unique and intriguing part of
our culture. This is why the Fair has been a valuable and viable destination for art enthusiasts
for 50 years. The Fair has provided many well known artists with beginning opportunities for
their art careers. We pride ourselves on continuing to encourage emerging artists to show and
sell their work as our state continues to thrive as an arts destination. Despite the proliferation
of new art shows, the Fair only accepts artists residing in New Mexico, which allows the money
our artists earn to directly impact the New Mexico economy.

“Twenty years ago I set a lofty goal for myself to make not just a living, but a good living as an
artist, solely through the sale of my artwork. My first show was the 1986 New Mexico Arts &
Crafts Fair. It was the show where I got my feet wet by learning how to get work ready for sale,
how to build an attractive display, how to interact with interested patrons, and how to network
with other artists. I came away from the show triumphant.” ~ Diana Stetson, Artist

“I exhibited in the fair for the first time in 1974 and sold my first painting there, which is why I
Sponsor the “Outstanding First-time Exhibitor Award”. Giving this award each year has given
me the opportunity to see first-hand how much the Fair does for aspiring artists. Time and time
again I hear their gratitude for having been given the opportunity to show their work at a
professional level. There are usually 35 to 50 first-timers each year, which adds up to lots of
doors that have been opened for lots of talented artists.” ~ Dan Stouffer, Artist

“If it wasn’t for the New Mexico Arts & Crafts Fair I would not be an artist, gallery owner, and
put on my annual art show.” ~ Mary Ann Weems, Artist, Gallery Owner, Art Show Executive

The New Mexico Arts & Crafts Fair, a recipient of the 2007 Bravos Award for “Outstanding Arts
Organization”, is the only art show open exclusively to artists and craftspeople from New
Mexico. Every year the Fair presents over 220 established and emerging New Mexico Artisans,
and is the Premier art event to present the most talented New Mexicans.
Rated as one of the top 200 Art Shows in the USA by Sunshine Artist Magazine.

A big part of the show is promoting Youth in Art. The Annual Youth Exhibit has grown to over
1,000 entries from throughout New Mexico. Entrants range from pre-school through high

The show attracts over 15,000 buyers and generates over $500,000.00 in art sales.
For the 50th Anniversary we will have a special Keynote Exhibit. This year’s theme is “Treasures
in Time” and will feature one old and one new piece of art from a group of our long time

Held at the Manuel Lujan building at Expo NM, the State Fairgrounds.
Admission $5.00 for adults, children 12 and under free.