UMFA’s Holiday Market Returns to Pre-Pandemic Brilliance


UMFA Holiday Market (Photo by Kaylee McElle | Courtesy UMFA)

By India Bown, Arts Writer

UMFA’s Annual Holiday Market is Back

In the spirit of the season, the Utah Museum of Fine Arts hosts an annual Holiday Market, showcasing local artists’ works for visitors to purchase. Unable to have the event last year due to pandemic restrictions, this time around is extra special for those attending the event and for the committee who organized it. UMFA’s Holiday Market is a glimmer of light in the darkness of the isolation we experienced. 

Director Mindy Wilson

Mindy Wilson, Director of Marketing and Communications at the UMFA, emphasized the brilliance of the Holiday Market taking place this year. “I think it’s more important than ever this year to support the local artists who have been struggling due to the pandemic, and the purchases not only help the artists, but part of the money made goes towards the Museum, supporting the art community here as well,” Wilson said.

Still having safety precautions in place with mask mandates and capacity limitations, the Museum wanted guests to enjoy the event without worry. Being able to transition from online events to in-person ones “feels like the kick-off for that, getting one step closer to normal,” Wilson said. 

With a variety of ceramics, paintings, jewelry, prints, woodwork, photography and other mediums, the art vendors had something for everyone. “I think the artists are what make the Holiday Market so special,” Wilson said. She highlighted Anthony Barbano, who is a glass artist and won “Best in Show” at the Utah Arts Festival, and Tracy O’Very Covey, who is a muralist who sold her jewelry at the Holiday Market. 

UMFA Museum Store Manager Carol Bigelow. (Courtesy UMFA Photo)

Experiencing the Holiday Market

The free event with time reservations took place from Dec. 4-5. I attended the event on Saturday in the late afternoon, Addison Line‘s harp-playing setting the calming atmosphere. The walls were filled with beautiful murals, exploding with color complimented by the simplistic cream and brown painted tones. The main attraction was the displays of unique art pieces, many of which I couldn’t keep my eyes off of. 

Going from hundred-dollar handmade scarfs to polymer clay jewelry, the Market had art of all prices and variety, giving opportunities to buy and support the artist community without having to spend copious amounts of money. 

An artist I bought work from to support was Rachel Kozlowski, who sells her own illustrations and housewares. Taking on nature-inspired work, Kozlowski uses her experience living in Utah with the beautiful mountains and deserts to create her illustrations for cards, prints, tote bags, and much more. Prints with animals in clothing personify the creatures to be more relatable and eye-catching. Not only were they intriguing to look at, but reasonably priced in order to accommodate all different types of budgets. 

The Holiday Market is worth the time and money spent. As I walked to each booth, I met amazing artists and got to take in the local art pieces at my own pace. If you want to learn more about UMFA and its events, check out their website.


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