Folk Arts

The goal of the Folk Arts Program is to conserve and sustain traditional performing and visual art forms practiced in New Mexico. Folk arts are the culturally-specific traditional, functional, and expressive arts practiced and passed down within a community.  Common types of cultural groups include: family, occupational, ethnic, or religious. Folk arts reflect the values and worldviews of the groups that make them and are a rich and valuable heritage for all New Mexicans.

The program provides grants for traditional folk arts projects and folk arts apprenticeships; conducts fieldwork and documentation of traditional arts in New Mexico; and presents programming to further highlight traditional art forms in the region.

The Traditional Folk Arts Projects grant category supports organizations, Indian tribal government entities, local governments, and universities whose programs further, showcase, and help to perpetuate the various traditional arts practiced in the State of New Mexico. Find current grant guidelines and application information here.

The Folk Arts Apprenticeship program contracts with master folk artists to teach their art forms to dedicated apprentices. The apprenticeship provides one-on-one intensive learning experiences for artist engaged traditional art forms. The master artist must demonstrate excellence in the traditional art form, and the apprentice must demonstrate a commitment to learning and carrying on the art form. Priority is given to master artists and apprentices who are members of the cultural group in which their art form developed and who learned their folk art in a traditional manner within their community.

Folk Arts Apprenticeships are funded through the National Endowment for the Arts and have specific guidelines and application process. Find current apprenticeship guidelines and grant application information here.