General Guidelines


The Spanish Market artists in the respective categories, in conjunction with The Spanish Colonial Arts Society, have developed these Guidelines. All artists, youth and adult, must acquaint themselves with these Guidelines relative to their respective art forms. Artists should also familiarize themselves with the history of these artistic traditions.

These Guidelines are meant to encourage quality and fidelity to the spirit of the Spanish colonial traditional arts of New Mexico and southern Colorado. The Traditional Spanish Market is unique and held only in Santa Fe. Artists take pride in their hand-made artwork and maintain the highest quality of craftsmanship and design. Artists shall not imitate or duplicate copyrighted pieces nor copy the unique style of other artists. Artwork in all categories must be of the highest quality to be accepted into Spanish Market.

Objects made for Spanish Market should be designed and made with a deep and enduring knowledge of, and respect for, the Spanish New Mexican traditions and forms. Innovation is encouraged as long as the work is based on New Mexican tradition and can be shown at Market when:

  • The artist has been in Market and has shown traditional work for two years;
  • The artist has screened into the Innovations Within Tradition category (adopted in 2010);
  • Only 30% of exhibited work shown at Market can be of Innovations Within Tradition.

Artists should be prepared to support any work submitted to Spanish Market with research and examples of precedents in Spanish colonial traditional arts of New Mexico and southern Colorado. Artists are strongly encouraged to pursue individual study of relevant subjects in their areas of specialization.

Artists should use these Guidelines in creating work to be submitted for juring, and judges will use the Guidelines during the Jurying process, Preview Judging, and at the Markets. Each artist must comply with these Guidelines.


Requirements to Participate in Market:

Adult and Youth artists wishing to participate in the traditional Spanish Market must be:

1)    At least ¼ Hispanic

2)    Native to New Mexico or southern Colorado. Artists not “native born” to this area must demonstrate that they have fully participated in the culture and have a definite historic and cultural connection to New Mexico. “Historic and cultural” is defined by the Standards Committee in terms of genealogy, geography, and participation in the culture

Youth artists must be mentored by a participating adult Spanish Market artist working in the same art category. To maintain the quality and fidelity of the Spanish colonial traditional arts of New Mexico and southern Colorado, it is essential that Youth artists learn and appreciate these traditions. Youth artists are not required to have their artwork screened. They may enter the Youth Market at the age of 7 and can continue to participate until 18 years of age at which point they may submit their work for adult screening for Spanish Market.

All artists are expected to familiarize themselves with these Guidelines and are encouraged to study the history of their respective art forms to ensure that their work complies with Market standards.


Artists’ Guidelines:

These Guidelines are meant to be used in good faith. Following the Guidelines to the letter does not guarantee that an artist will be accepted at Screening or Re-Screening or will win an award at the Spanish Market Preview. Within each of the following categories, the arts are described in terms of:

  1. Subjects and forms represented
  2. Materials used in making the artwork
  3. Tools and techniques employed

Adherence to the Spanish colonial traditional arts of New Mexico and southern Colorado is essential. Acceptable entries listed under the three headings are designated as “Preferred” or “Accepted.” Artists who are interested in using something other than that listed in these Guidelines must provide evidence of historical use to the Spanish Colonial Arts Society. Entries listed under the “Not Acceptable” headings are considered to be outside the realm of traditional Spanish colonial traditional arts of New Mexico and southern Colorado and are not permitted in the Markets.


Many of the traditional arts incorporate mixed media. If an artist incorporates more than one art form into a piece, then the artist must be juried into all the categories that apply. Decorative elements incidental to the main work of art may comprise no more than 10% of the overall piece. For example, the addition of a stone or metal enhancement to a carved wood piece may be no more than 10% of the entire work of art.  (This does not qualify the artwork for Mixed Media awards).

Artists must collaborate with other current Spanish Market artists when creating artwork that includes more than 10% of elements outside of their juried categories and these pieces must be signed by each artist.

Jurying Procedures for New Applicants:
Screening new applicants for Spanish & Winter Markets takes place once each year. The process begins in the Fall when applications and Guidelines are sent to:

  • Youth artists who will be at least 18 years old by the next Spanish Market;
  • All current Market artists so that those who have a desire to jury into an additional art form are notified of the date, time and place they may do so;
  • New artists who have inquired about jurying and meet the qualifications to screen.

Applications for jurying will be available on the Spanish Colonial Arts Society website or by calling the Director of Spanish Market. Applicants are asked to submit three sample art pieces, which have been completed within the last two years, for jurying, which is held in winter or early spring. Applicants bring in their sample pieces at the specified time and site for the judging. Judging is done during the late-morning and afternoon, and the art must be picked up late afternoon the same day. Judging is done by the Spanish Colonial Arts Society Standards Committee comprised of curators, art collectors, gallery owners and art historians who have an excellent overall knowledge of all the accepted art forms. All artists are notified of the results in writing within a month of the jurying. Current artists who do not meet the minimum standards are advised that they must screen with the new applicants the following year to be re-admitted to Market. The timing of the re-jurying is the same as it is for new applicants.

Note: Artists who do not participate in Summer Market for two consecutive years are moved to an inactive file and must re-jury if they then wish to participate in future Markets.

Bultos en Nicho
Colcha Embroidery
Copper Engraving
Furniture and Furnishings
Hide Paintings
Precious Metals
Revival Arts
Bone Carving
Leatherwork / Rawhide
Straw Appliqué
Unpainted Bultos
Painted Bultos
Upainted Relief Panels
Painted Reliefs
Innovations Within Tradition

Re-Jurying of Current Market Artists:

Artists who have been accepted into Spanish Market are re-jurying every five years to ensure that they are maintaining a quality appropriate for the Markets. All artwork submitted for rescreening must have been completed within the two years prior to the jury date. Artists are exempt from rejurying if they meet any one or more of the categories listed below:

  • Lifetime Achievement Award Winners do not have to rescreen in their categories unless they are juried into a new category subsequent to receiving the award. This new category will not constitute an exemption for rescreening unless the artist meets one or more of the additional exemptions listed below;
  • An artist has won a Grand or First Prize within the preceding five years;
  • An artist has reached the age of 70 or older and has participated in Spanish Market for at least ten (10) years
  • Within 5 years of the time an artist has juried into a new category, the artist is exempt from rejuring in that category;
  • Artists who have submitted research and original artwork for a newly accepted category published in the Guidelines, are automatically juried into that category and are exempt from rescreening in that category for a period of 5 years.

Judging is done by the Spanish Colonial Arts Society Standards Committee comprised of curators, art collectors, gallery owners and art historians who have an excellent overall knowledge of all the accepted art forms. The panel may include a professional specific to the art form being re-screened.

Preview Judging for Spanish Market Awards:
The annual awarding of Spanish Market prizes takes place just before Spanish Market. Judges are chosen from a variety of art communities including art academics, museum curators, gallery owners, collectors, etc. with an expertise in one or more of the accepted art forms. Judges are selected by the Director of Spanish Market, the Executive Director of the Spanish Colonial Arts Society, the Curator of Museum of Spanish Colonial Art, and the Judging Coordinator, and include judge recommendations from the Artist’s Liaison Committee.

(Revised 9/2011)