Sarah May started weaving as a way to connect with her Indigenous roots.
Born in the United States after her family immigrated from El Salvador, she feels disconnected, having never set foot in her home country.
“I don’t know my people. I don’t know my language. I don’t know any of that stuff,” May said. “So that was why I started weaving; I felt a connection knowing that my ancestors in some way or another were weavers, were artists, and it was literally ingrained and woven into their lives.”
May’s shop, Cyanoweave, combines her cyanotype photography with her weaved mandala wall hangings, and it will be part of a holiday artist pop-up market at Finch Lane Gallery from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 14, in Salt Lake City.
Her cyanotypes look like watercolor paintings, with bright hues of blue contrasting with images in white, and often depict nature and foliage. Cyanotype is a form of alternative photography that uses light sensitive chemicals that can be applied to paper, wood and fabric. A light box can be used, but May uses the sun’s ultraviolet light to expose and bring images to the surface.
For May’s woven wall hangings, she starts with the shape of circles, which for her is symbolic of cycles and the earth. She also is drawn to bright colors of yarn, like oranges and yellows that remind her of mangoes and cream. She works by intuition, drawing inspiration from the color of the yarn she picks up at thrift stores and things she finds in nature, such as driftwood and branches.
In addition to the Finch Lane pop-up, May will be participating in Alta Community Enrichment (ACE) Holiday Art Market Dec. 9 to 11.
“These little local markets bring the arts to the people. I feel like art is something that people feel is really inaccessible, like it’s something that belongs in a museum,” said May. “But art is really a part of our way of life and our Indigenous communities. Not only Indigenous to the Americas, but across Europe and Africa, pretty much the whole world. People were creating art as a way of life and to process emotions and tell their stories.”
A new approach
When the Salt Lake City Arts Council created its first holiday craft market, it was trying to fill a need. Now, with so many art and craft markets opening during the season, its leaders decided to do things a little differently this year.
Instead of one central marketplace with several artists, there will be 12 different artists and craftspeople individually highlighted at the gallery on different days.
“Each artist can bring more work than they usually would, and people can interact with them about the process,” said Claire Taylor, visual arts coordinator for the Salt Lake City Arts Council. She deliberately chose artists from different mediums in order to highlight their craftsmanship. “Having the artist there,” she said, “makes it all the more possible for people to learn about what went into producing the artwork.”
The artisan Pop-Up Shops will take place Tuesdays through Saturdays, Dec. 4 to 21, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., at The Finch Lane Gallery, 54 Finch Lane, Salt Lake City. A list of the artists and the days they will be featured can be found on at saltlakearts.org.
Concurrently with the holiday pop-up shops, the council is also partnering this year with the Utah Division of Arts and Museums to host the Statewide Annual Exhibit. This exhibition is an annual art show that rotates between different media, with this year’s media being craft, photography, video and digital art.
The show is usually held at Rio Grande Depot, but due to ongoing construction after the Salt Lake Valley’s 2020 earthquake, exhibitions have been postponed or moved elsewhere. There will be an opening reception for the exhibit on Dec. 3, tied in with the December gallery stroll from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., and the first pop-up shop will follow the morning after, on Dec. 4 at 11 a.m. Masks are required for entry.
May will also have an art piece displayed in the statewide exhibition, a retablo, which means behind an altar, that incorporates one of her cyanotypes and is a representation of her family heritage and her journey exploring her identity.
“I’m hoping that the artists are able to make a lot of sales and also make connections. Often at markets, it’s not only the sales, but also creating a network that leads to other things,” said Taylor.
Taylor said that many artists were hit particularly hard during the pandemic. Many venues, including the Finch Lane Gallery, had to cancel their holiday markets last year, which meant the loss of art shows that are a way to bolster artists economically.
“And so I’m especially hoping with the artists we’re highlighting, each individual artist, it’ll lead to more beyond just the pop-up shop,” she said.
There are many local art markets to choose from this year. New ones are opening, such as a European-inspired Vintage & Craft Market complete with mulled wine and apple cider, to join recurring events like Craft Lake City’s third annual Holiday Market in Ogden and the Silly Holiday Bazaar in Park City and now in Sandy.
Ongoing markets now open
The Hive Market SLC • An artisans’ pop-up market provides locally made goods for the holidays. Trolley Square, 602 S. 700 East, Salt Lake City, and a new location in the Outlets Park City mall, 6699 N. Landmark Dr., Park City. Mondays-Saturdays 10 a.m.–9 pm. and Sundays 12-6 p.m. starting Black Friday weekend through Christmas. Free admission. Find details at The Hive Market’s Instagram page, @thehivemarketslc.
Neighborhood Hive Pop-Up Market • The Neighborhood Hive is based on a concept similar to Seattle’s Pike Place Market, with open shopping at owner-operated store fronts of small businesses such as Hello! Bulk Market and Olio Skin Care. The pop-up will be going through the holidays, every Saturday, 9 a.m.–1 p.m. in the parking lot of The Neighborhood Hive, 2065 E. 2100 South., Salt Lake City. More info at theneighborhoodhive.org
Salt & Honey Market Holiday Makers • This seven-week holiday pop-up will be full of handcrafted, one-of-a-kind, unique gifts from the best of Utah’s makers. At two locations, Salt & Honey Market, 926 E. 900 South, Salt Lake City, and Fashion Place mall, 6191 S. State St., Murray. Going on now until Jan. 2. Hours vary by location. Visit their instagram page @saltandhoneymarket for the most up-to-date information.
Winter Farmers Market • The downtown indoor Winter Farmers Market will feature over 60 fresh food and craft vendors, selling locally grown produce, meat, eggs, cheese, baked goods, sauces, condiments, chocolate and unique holiday items. The Gateway, 400 W. 200 South, Salt Lake City; Saturdays, 10 a.m.–2 p.m. through April. Free admission. More info at slc farmers market.org.
Winterfest Art Jubilee • An assortment of affordable, unique, handmade items from artists and artisans from all over the state; with everything from watercolor and oil paintings to jewelry, pottery, fiber art pieces, and handmade books. Bountiful Davis Art Center, 90 N. Main St., Bountiful; Tuesday-Friday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m and Saturday noon–5 p.m., now through Dec. 23. Free admission. More info at bdac.org.
Opening in December
Christkindlmarkt SLC • Inspired by German Christmas markets, Christkindlmarkt SLC offers a unique holiday shopping and cultural experience, food and festive holiday entertainment outside in wooden vendor booths. This Is the Place Heritage Park, 2601 E. Sunnyside Ave. Dec. 1-4, 11 a.m.–8 p.m. Free admission. More info at christkindlmarkt-slc.com.
Simple Treasures Weber Holiday Boutique • Over 130 local crafters offer unique handcrafted gifts, holiday and home decor, trendy boutique fashion and accessories, jewelry and neighbor gifts. Golden Spike Event Center (Weber Fairgrounds), 1000 N. 1200 West, Ogden; Dec. 1-3, 10 a.m.–8 p.m. and Dec. 4, 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Grand opening on Dec. 1, 8-10 a.m. $5 admission with treats and treasure hunts. General admission $1 at the door (12 and under free). More info at simpletreasures.boutique.
Utah Art Market • Connecting the community with local artists and artisans from all over Utah. Selling fine art, prints, jewelry, pottery, metal work, wood work and seasonal holiday gifts. 1400 S. Foothill Drive in Foothill Village (formerly Steinmart), Salt Lake City; Dec. 2-4 and Dec. 9-11, 10 a.m.–7 p.m. Free admission. Find more information on Instagram page @utahartmarket.
Craft Lake City Holiday Market • After a virtual marketplace last year, Craft Lake City will return to Ogden’s Nine Rails Creative District for a two-day, in-person event that will feature handmade gifts by dozens of Utah’s top artisans, vintage vendors and craft foodies. The Monarch, 451 25th St., Ogden. Dec. 3 from 5-10 p.m. and Dec. 4, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. More info at craftlakecity.com.
Finch Lane Pop-Up Shops • The Salt Lake City Arts Council is partnering with the Utah Division of Arts and Museums to exhibit the Statewide Annual competition in Craft, Photography, Video and Digital. In conjunction with the exhibit, they are holding Finch Lane Pop-Up Shops by individual artists and craftspeople. Finch Lane Gallery, 54 S. Finch Lane (1340 East). Dec. 3–Jan. 5. More info at saltlakearts.org. Masks will be required for entry.
Silly Holiday Bazaar • The Park Silly Market will have two locations of the Silly Holiday Bazaar this year featuring artists and crafters from Summit and Salt Lake counties. Free parking and photos with Santa. New location in The Shops at South Town, 10450 S. State Street. Dec. 3-4, 12-8 p.m.; Dec. 5, 12-6 p.m. DoubleTree Park City Yarrow, 1800 Park Avenue, Park City. Dec. 10, 5-9 p.m.; Dec. 11-12, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Free admission. More info at parksillysundaymarket.com.
Provo Downtown Holiday Market • Featuring vendors with local crafts, food, music, an ice sculpture, Santa and Lights On, a tree and park lighting ceremony at 5:30 p.m. Pioneer Park, 500 W. Center St., Provo; Dec. 4, 4-8 p.m. Free admission. More info at Provo Recreation’s Facebook page.
Red Butte Garden Holiday Open House & Art Fair • Local artists will bring an array of handmade gifts, including jewelry, glass art, pottery, fiber art, wearable art, natural soaps and lotions. Red Butte Garden Orangerie, 300 Wakara Way. Dec. 4-5, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Free admission. More info at redbuttegarden.org.
Utah Museum of Fine Arts Holiday Market • The UMFA annual Holiday Market will feature local artists such as glass artist Anthony Barbano, painter and muralist Traci O’Very Covey. Find handmade creations in glass, ceramics, paintings, jewelry, photography and artisan chocolates. Due to ongoing COVID precautions, attendees are asked to register in advance at umfa.utah.edu/visit. Admission to the market is free with reservation, but the museum gallery itself requires an entrance fee. Marcia and John Price Museum Building, 410 Campus Center Drive. Dec. 4–5, 9 a.m.–5 p.m. More info at umfa.utah.edu.
Vintage & Craft Holiday Market • Inspired by European holiday markets, Preservation Utah will be holding its first annual holiday market complete with Glühwein (mulled wine) and apple cider. Featuring local artists selling vintage and traditional crafts. At the Memorial House in Memory Grove Park, 375 N. Canyon Rd. Saturday, Dec. 4, 10 a.m.–6 p.m. More info at preservationutah.org.
Penny Lane Holiday Market • A pop-up market featuring local vendors selling handmade goods, treats, art, vintage and gift items. Crescent Hall, 11020 S. State St., Sandy. Dec. 6-8, 10 a.m.–8 p.m. Visit pennylanemarket.wordpress.com for more info.
Alta Community Enrichment (ACE) Holiday Art Market • Featuring handmade holiday gifts from a number of local artists. Our Lady of the Snows, 10189 East Highway 210, Alta. Dec. 9-11, 2 – 7 p.m. Attendees will need to show proof of being vaccinated or show proof of a negative test. More info at altacommunity.org.
Art Haus Christmas Market • Enjoy a night at Art Haus, a pottery, drawing and painting studio. Come meet the makers, buy crafted handmade gifts for the holidays, enjoy music, snacks and drinks. All of the makers are students and instructors of the studio. 177 E. 900 S. Suite G, Salt Lake City. Dec. 11, 4-8:30 p.m. RSVP on the website arthaus-slc.com.
Holiday Urban Flea Market • The flea market features eclectic vintage and antique items, clothing, records, furniture, art and handcrafted items. The Gateway, 18 North Rio Grande St. Sunday, Dec. 12, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Admission $2; children 12 and under free. More info at fleamarketslc.com.
Virtual Hanukkah Market • Due to COVID-19, the I.J. & Jeanné Wagner Jewish Community Center will once again have its traditional Hanukkah market online. Starting in December, shop its website for Hanukkah essentials, holiday gifts and books from The King’s English Bookshop. More info at slcjcc.org.