Tag Archives: Heard Museum

Exploring Native American cultures

Detail from a Native American Heritage Month display at the South Mountain Community Library in Phoenix

I learned while attending last week’s Arizona Library Association conference at South Mountain Community Library that the Circle of Nations Club at SMCC will be celebrating “Native American Heritage Week” Nov. 13-15 — which inspired me to go in search of other opportunities to explore Native American arts and culture.

Turns out you can enjoy a “Veterans Day Gourd Dance” today through 4pm at the Pueblo Grande Museum and a “Native American Connections 40th Anniversary Celebration” from 10am-4pm on Tuesday, Nov. 20th at Indian Steele Park’s Memorial Hall. Both are located in Phoenix.

Scottsdale Community College Performing Arts presents a Native American Heritage Exhibition called “The Business of Contemporary Indigenous Art” through Dec. 6 — featuring a reception taking place from 5-7pm on Tuesday, Nov. 13.

SMCC celebrates Native American cultures this week

ASU’s Deer Valley Rock Art Center, which is home to the largest collection of Native American petroglyphs in the Valley, celebrates Native American Recognition Days with a “Native American Heritage Festival” Saturday, Nov. 17 from 10am-3pm. The festival features a screening of the film “Apache 8,” music by Gertie Lopez and the T.O. Boyz, modern Navajo cuisine by Chef Harrison Watchman, art demonstrations, guided hikes, and arts and crafts for children.

The Phoenix Art Museum presents a film titled “Smoke Signals,” which seeks to “demythologize the American Indian” at 1pm on Sunday, Nov. 18. The “Native Eyes Film Showcase” comes to The Loft Cinema in Tucson Saturday, Dec. 1 at 6pm. Arizona State Museum at UA in Tucson often presents exhibits and events celebrating Native American cultures.

The Heard Museum presents “Native Words, Native Warriors” — a traveling Smithsonian Institution exhibit focused on the role Native languages played in 20th century U.S. military efforts — through Sunday, March 3. It’s complemented by art and artifacts, plus an exhibit titled “Navajo Code Talkers: Photographs by Kenji Kawano.

Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts presents the “Native Trails” series including Native American music, dance, arts and culture 15 days from January to April 2013. They’ve designated Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013 as a special day for veterans. Their “OrigiNation” festival featuring native cultures of Arizona and India takes place April 7, 2013.

Books available at the South Mountain Community Library

Explore additional offerings through the Phoenix Indian Center and Central Arizona Museum Association – plus your local libraries, colleges and historical societies. Learn more about Native American cultures online through the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian.

– Lynn

Note: Click here to learn more about Native Americans in the U.S. military, and here for information on a call for new works for the OKC Theatre Company 2013 “Native American New Plays Festival.”

Coming up: Pushing buttons & pulling strings

Hula hoops and neon?

When folks gather for this week’s Friend Raiser for Rising Youth Theatre, they’ll be surrounded by retro flair from hula hoops to gymnasium risers. Their fundraiser with a friendly twist takes place Thurs, Aug. 23 from 6-8pm at The Duce in Phoenix, a joint named for the produce once processed there.

I’m told the event, with $12 tickets online or $15 tickets at the door, will feature performances by Rock Steady Crew and minibosses, and that Rising Youth Theatre will get 10% of proceeds in the eats department. Also that the party, complete with nifty games, is fit for all ages.

It’s a fun chance to introduce your kids to vinyl seating, hand-operated kitchen appliances, aluminum bathroom doors and t-shirts for bands that never claim to move like Jagger. Plus retro bikes and motorcycles, a one-time boxing ring and oodles of quaint objects like cookbooks sporting women with beehive hairdos.

The Heard Museum chose gala over grunge (grunge good, mind you) for its annual fundraiser taking place Sat., Oct. 20 at 6pm. The Moondance Gala features “an evening of elegance and glamour” with performance by Mogollon. Leave the hula hoops, even those covered in bling, at home that night as the museum honors Senator Jon and Caryll Kyl.

Come Sat., Nov. 3, you can get your neon on with the Phoenix Art Museum, which is presenting its annual black tie dinner dance. Those of you who’ve still got glow-in-the-dark necklaces from your last Jimmy Buffet concert in the freezer should leave them there. The pARTy starts at 6:30pm that night, and neon will be one of the star attractions.

Bernadette Peters, who needs no neon to glow, is coming to town with music director Marvin Laird to perform at this year’s ARTrageous event benefiting arts education and outreach programs for Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts and Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art. The Sat., Dec. 1 shindig starts at 5pm, and the concert is scheduled for 8:30pm.

The Children’s Museum of Phoenix presents its inaugural Kid at Heart gala Sat., April 6, 2013 at 6pm. I’m told to expect a whimsical circus with a “Cirque de Musée” theme. So maybe, just maybe, I can whip out the old hula hoops after all.

– Lynn

Note: If you actually remember seeing Jimmy Buffet do a concert in a freezer, you’ve got more than neon on the brain. My apologies to folks like Grammar Girl who flaunt the fine print of finessing the English language.

Coming up: Spinning a yarn, Prime time for poets

One block in Brooklyn

St. Patrick’s Day came a bit early to Brooklyn as a man selling souvenirs donned a green beard and a purveyor of tasty fare called Blue Apron Foods turned out cookies with Irish flair. I decided, after hitting a Brooklyn origami studio one afternoon, to walk the rest of the block — curious about what I might find within one block in Brooklyn. Clearly it was good. After sampling a piece of authentic shortbread and getting a bakery tour of everything from dinosaur cookies to thin multicolored licorice ropes, I headed out in search of all things Brooklyn.

As I walked, a lone book title — “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn” — kept running through my head. It’s actually oodles of trees, many still sporting bare winter branches — but others just beginning to show tiny green sprouts of life. I realized, after strolling through a bit of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, that many were the sort of crabapple trees I’d seen there. Often streets were lined with trees, beautiful even when bare.

I made my way to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden after a lovely gentleman at Blue Apron Foods gave me directions. Really good ones. Seems his father was in the service, and there’s a Grand Army Plaza honoring folks who’ve fought in the military near the turn you take to enter the garden — which is accessible off the street or one of New York’s plentiful parks. The garden was filled with woody Japanese wisteria, bright yellow daffodils in bloom and bulbs yet to open.

I actually got a bit distracted en route to the garden — spying one of my favorite places in any town I visit. The local library. The Brooklyn Public Library has a magnificent edifice featuring gold designed inspired by mythology and a pair of quotes etched in stone. Quotes from A.A. Milne and other children’s author wrap around a portion of the children’s area, and an exhibit of botanical theme quilts from the Quilters’ Guild of Brooklyn is currently exhibited in the library’s grand lobby.

Curious about a building I’d spied adjacent to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, I decided to do more exploring and stumbled upon a truly exceptional find — the Brooklyn Museum, where an exhibition featuring works by Keith Haring has just opened. Exciting stuff, but not quite pitter patter material like the works of Auguste Rodin — my favorite sculpture, and someone whose work I first enjoyed during a year of study and travel abroad. I admired Rodin’s work while thinking about Arizona’s own John Waddell and his newest installation adjacent to the Herberger Theater Center. Often I find the hands and feet most fascinating.

Like our own Phoenix Art Museum and Heard Museum, the Brooklyn Museum has a special room dedicated to children and teens. Their Con Ed education gallery exhibits sculpture, paintings, drawings and multi-media works created in various programs and classes offered by the museum. Many of the youth works reveal real skill and depth of emotion.

My mission to meander through just a single block in Brooklyn turned into something much more. Two boroughs down, three to go.

– Lynn

Note: Click here to explore our own Desert Botanical Garden and here to exlore our own Phoenix Art Museum – both of which offer programs for youth. Click here to enjoy a post by Marina Chetner featuring photos snapped throughout the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

Coming up: Big read meets big quilt, A serious superstar

Family-friendly festivals

I first attended the Scottsdale Arts Festival more than a decade ago when my children were very small. They loved tagging along for all sorts of reasons. The chance to see paintings, sculpture and other works of art. Hands-on arts and crafts projects. Fresh air and sunshine. Even the chance to people and pet watch.

This year’s Scottsdale Arts Festival takes place March 9-11 outdoors at the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts. Folks who attend can experience the works of more than 180 artists from across the country, more than 20 bands and entertainers and a dozen “gourmet” food trucks.

Natalie Irish will be creating artwork with kisses during the Scottsdale Arts Festival that runs March 9-11

Also “one eye-popping art project made of kisses and you” — plus a host of interactive art projects and an Imagine Nation kids area.

The festival runs Fri/Sat 10am-6pm, and Sun 10am-5pm. Children under age 12 are free and students pay just $5 to attend (single tickets for others are $7).

The Mesa Festival of Creativity also kicks off on Fri, March 9 — but it runs through Sun, March 18. It’s being held Mesa Arts Center, and though admission to most events is free, there is a $5 charge to take a “Studio Sampler” class or explore the “Mirazozo” sculpture.

Folks who attend the Mesa Festival of Creativity can add their strand to a community fiber arts project, create an origami bird to help fill trees surrounding MAC, play a giant “Earth Harp,” watch an artist couple painting with break dancing, create a work of chalk art, help build a giant LEGO structure and more. Festival hours are noon to 9pm.

The Tucson Festival of Books takes place March 10 & 11 9am-5:30pm on the University of Arizona campus. The festival features dozens of authors, illustrators and storytellers — including Caldecott and Newbury Award winners. Also entertainment including music, dance and more — much of it with a multicultural vibe. There’s also a special children’s area.

The Irish Cultural Center presents their 29th annual “St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Faire” Sat, March 17 10am-6pm, beginning with a parade up 3rd St. from the Irish Cultural Center to Margaret T. Hance Park in Phoenix. The festival features “music, dancing, piping, a beer garden and dozens of vendors selling artifacts and food” – plus a children’s area. Dress as you will but know that anything other than green will stick out like a five-leaf clover in a field of shamrocks.

Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts presents another festival next month. Their “OrigiNation: A Festival of National Cultures” April 14 & 15 noon-4pm will “celebrate indigenous cultures of Arizona, Australia and New Zealand.” The free event features an arts and crafts market, arts and crafts exhibits, children’s activities and workshops, and more. It’s being held in conjunction with the center’s “Discovery Series.”

– Lynn

Note: The Heard Museum also holds several festivals each year, so watch their website for upcoming events as well. And click here if you’d like to learn more about the Red Shamrock Foundation, an Iowa-based organization supporting patients and families who have been through cancer treatment.

Coming up: Another Arizona Centennial, Art meets refugee, Music experiences for the very young

A little holiday stroll

Puddle Jumpers by Glenna Goodacre near Viad Tower in Phoenix

Lighting candles with special meaning. Traveling far and wide. Exchanging gifts and goodies. Feasting on favorite family recipes. Helping folks in need. We’ve all been busy in recent days and weeks.

If you’re eager to return to some semblance of calm, consider a series of strolls enjoyed in solitude, or with family and friends. If the kids come along, encourage them to bring camera or sketchpad to catch unexpected finds along the way.

The following photos spotlight various places throughout the Valley where you’ll find lovely statues and works of sculpture that’ll add a bit of wonder to your holiday strolls.

The Joy of Music by George Lundeen (Fountain Hills)

Work at the Cofco Chinese Cultural Center (Phoenix)

 Cancer…There’s Hope by Victor Salmones in Cancer Survivors Park (Phoenix)

Sightseeing by J. Seward Johnson, Jr. near Viad Tower (Phoenix)

Work near the Arizona Science Center (Phoenix)

Work at the entrance to the Carver Museum (Phoenix)

Work at Scottsdale Fashion Square (Scottsdale)

Okay, so maybe that last one can wait for another day. But let me know if you stumble on other sculptures or statues, and have photos to share with our readers — I’d love to feature them in a future post.

– Lynn

Coming up: Mama bear meets stiletto, Inside the NYC Public Library

The fine art of flags

Flag hung by Occupy Wall Street protestors at Zuccotti Park in New York City

After seeing the above flag flown by Occupy Wall Street protestors at Zuccotti Park in New York City last month, I felt inspired to search for other images of the American flag closer to home. Here’s a bit of what I discovered:

“Field of Blue,” a tribute to the Boy Scouts of America flag-folding ceremony, by Colorado artist George Lundeen, exhibited at Scottsdale Fine Art gallery…

Flag made of baseballs hanging in a Red Robin restaurant in Scottsdale…

Carving created in 2002 by Navajo folk artist Lorenzo Reed to depict the Navajo Code Talkers, who were instrumental to victory of the Allied forces in the Pacific theater during WWII (Part of the Heard Museum collection)…

“A New Sun Rising” by Jeanne Bonine, which will be exhibited Nov 25-27 at the Talking Stick Fine Art and Wine Festival at Salt River Fields…


Flag created by students at Herrera Elementary School in Phoenix…

LEGO flag by brick artist Nathan Sawaya of New York, currently exhibited at Mesa Contemporary Arts in the Mesa Arts Center…

“Pledge Allegiance” by James Poppitz, a gift of Mr. and Mrs. Rudy H. Turk to the ASU Art Museum at Arizona State University in Tempe…

Flag textile created by Navajo weaver Sadie Curtis and flown over both the Arizona and U.S. Capitol during bicentennial celebrations in 1976 (part of the Heard Museum collection in Phoenix)…

“Leading the Way” by Texas artist Kyle Polzin, exhibited at Legacy Gallery in Scottsdale…

“American” by California artist Robert Tate, exhibited at May Gallery in Scottsdale…

“National Unity Flag,” designed by Randy Cooney of Arizona, during a recent 9/11 exhibition at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts…

“4th of July Barn” by Cheyenne L. Rouse, exhibited at Ancient Light Gallery and available online at http://www.cheyennerouse.com/matted-prints

Thanks to all those who sent images for this post. Please stay tuned for additional works of art that I’ll be adding in the near future.

– Lynn

Note: Visit the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs website to learn more about the history and commemoration of Veterans Day, and to find related resources for teachers and students. Click here for details about today’s 11 am Veterans Day parade in Phoenix (several groups of students are participating in the parade).

Coming up: Valley veterans find healing through the arts

From pow wow to performance art

Children waiting for their turn to dance during a pow wow held this weekend

I noticed a large sign the other day while driving near Scottsdale Community College. The white sign had big red letters that read “POW WOW” and noted two dates — Nov. 5 & 6. So I headed out with my son Christopher, a student at SCC, to enjoy some time at the event.

Ashleigh (age 10) with her mother

The term “pow wow,” by the way, refers to a gathering of North American native peoples — but many of these events welcome members of the public, who come to enjoy Native American dance, music, food and crafts.

When we first entered the Red Mountain Eagle Pow Wow, presented in Scottsdale by the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, we met some folks from New Mexico and Colorado — the “Denver Broncos” tent was my first clue.

A quiet 10-year-old named Ashleigh stood patiently as her mother fixed her hair. We also met a boy holding a short pole topped with an eagle talon, who explained that the eagle represents strength. Folks from several states, including Texas and Oklahoma, traveled here to take part in the event.

We strolled though the area featuring tents with all sorts of vendors — finding Native American, Mexican and American food plus all sorts of arts and crafts. Think dreamcatchers, handpainted Christmas ornaments, blankets, jewelry and more.

A boy waits his turn to dance

Soon we heard them call for singers to prepare and for dancers to start lining up — and I took out my camera to capture a few of the younger participants pictured throughout this post.

If you’re not able to attend the pow wow on Sunday, consider enjoying Native American arts and culture via Valley museums and performing arts venues.

Mesa Arts Center presents “Native American Song and Dance-Canyon Record’s 60th Anniversiary” Nov. 12 & 13 — which features “the brilliant artistry of dancers and singers, as well as Native American flute performers, representing the Navajo, Cree, Apache, Hopi and other indigenous nations of the U.S. and Canada.”

One of the youngest dancers

The 1oth season of “Native Trails,” presented by the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation and produced by Scottsdale Center for the Arts, opens on Jan. 19, 2012. “Native Trails” features a series of free noontime concerts on an outdoor stage — and includes Native American music, dance, art and traditional food.

The Heard Museum, with locations in both Scottsdale and Phoenix, has a full calendar of events and exhibitions featuring Native American arts and culture. Think festivals, marketplace events, film screenings, activities for children and teens, author readings, lectures, book sales, concerts, dance competitions and more.

For many years, November has been designated as “National Native American Heritage Month.” So make a point of exploring Native American history, arts and culture with your children — and with friends and neighbors who come to visit this time of year.

– Lynn

Note: Click here to learn about other Arizona museums featuring Native American arts and culture, and here for a list of pow wows scheduled in Arizona and other parts of the country.

Coming up: Valley Muslims celebrate Eid al-Adha

Bolo tales

Detail of The Arizona Bolas by Michael A. Maglich

Seems Arizona’s official state neckwear, the bolo tie, is making a fashion comeback. Or so they tell me over at the Heard Museum in Phoenix — which opens an exhibit of bolo tie art Sat. Nov. 19.

“Native American Bolo Ties: Vintage and Contemporary” features “ties from the Heard’s permanent collection of more than 170 bolo ties and from the promised gift of Chicago collector Norman L. Sandfield.”

Power Bola from The Arizona Bolas by Michael A. Maglich

The exhibit and a related book will “show the antecedents of the bolo tie including Victorian neckwear and scarf slides.” The exhibit will examine how Western wear was popularized through movies and television of the 1950s, and “showcase bolo ties created by American Indian jewelers from the late 1940s through today.”

Turns out there’s another place you can enjoy a blend of bolo tie and art. It’s along the 3rd St. and Washington light rail stop near Symphony Hall in Phoenix — where a collection of bronze sculptures by Michael A. Maglich is installed.

A sign describing “The Arizona Bolas” notes that “these sculptures use the bola as a unifying symbol.” They’re meant to represent “the many activities occuring at the Convention Center and Civic Plaza.” Think commerce, industry, recreation and entertainment.

“Also included are references to regional history, plants and animals,” notes the sign. My personal favorites include a tie sporting pine cones, but that’s only because the artist failed to forge a bronze ice cream scoop.

Scroll Bola from The Arizona Bolas by Michael A. Maglich

Seems the tie originated in Wickenberg during the 1940s, which means my children — who grew up making a McDonald’s pit stop in Wickenberg every time we visited grandparents in Las Vegas — will be puzzled by the lack of a Happy Meals bolo tie.

Also the fact that there are two ways to spell the darn thing. Seems the “bola” contingent won out when it came time to officially name the tie Arizona’s official neckwear. We added that gem to the Arizona Revised Statutes in 1971, before Texas and New Mexico decided to jump on the bandwagon (with the alternate spelling).

You say “bolo.” I say “bola.” Let’s call the whole thing “art.”

– Lynn

Note: Click here to learn more about public art in Phoenix — and here for news of a current call to artists and poets.

Coming up: My first New York Comic Con adventure

Shopping takes center stage

Mosaic art by Evelyn Gholson from the TCA gift shop

In a drive-through, mail order world, it’s nice sometimes to take a detour back to the days of lovely customer service and goods with close-to-home origins. My latest pair of earrings came from the gift shop at Tempe Center for the Arts, where amazing volunteers speak with genuine enthusiasm of the local artists whose works they sell and support.

After attending a recent Arizoni Awards ceremony at TCA, where bright fushia, teal and crimson feathers took center stage for a musical number from “Seussical, Jr.,” I was thrilled to find more subdued art ala feathers among the gift shop’s selection of hair bobbles — something I notice more than most now that my locks are getting rather long.

Whimsical fare from the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts museum store

The week before, I’d visited the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts gift shop with my son Christopher, who was searching for fun care package items to send to sister Lizabeth in New York City. I wish I had known about their retro-vibe totes back when Lizabeth still spent most of her time hauling around pointe shoes and other ballet paraphernalia.

Diverse offerings from the Arizona Latino Arts and Culture Center gift shop

I left with all sorts of buttons featuring fun images and sayings, something I’m also a sucker for at the Phoenix Art Museum. Never mind that they have artsy kitchen utensils, kids’ crafts, accessories and such. I’m a sucker for a bin full of buttons — and the classier black flower crafted of zippers that I always pine for when I’m there.

Jewelry, baskets and more from the Heard Museum shop in Phoenix

I hit the Heard Museum gift shops in Phoenix and Scottsdale while on the prowl last year for unique holiday ornaments. Their “when pigs fly” folk art offerings were a big hit at last year’s holiday shindig with my magazine family. I also picked up a tiny silver charm that helped ease Jennifer’s nerves one day as a particularly tough test was looming at ASU.

Musical instruments, books and more from the MIM museum shop

I rarely leave the gift shop at the Musical Instrument Museum empty handed since I’m ever so fond of their world music offerings. They’ve got fun instruments like thumb pianos, a diverse selection of books for kids and adults, and sterling silver jewely that makes my heart skip a beat.

Jewelry from MADE art boutique located along Roosevelt Row in Phoenix

We’ve also enjoyed our time at gift shops for the Phoenix Zoo, the Rio Salado Audubon Society, the Desert Botanical Garden and other places where art meets nature. Plus smaller venues offering funkier fare — like the art galleries and shops along Roosevelt Row in Phoenix. Also library gift shops run by lovely volunteers and “Local First AZ” businesses with an arts twist.

Kitchen utensils and tools from the Phoenix Art Museum gift shop

As you’re shopping in coming months for special gifts for family, friends and teachers, remember the museums, performing arts venues and other places with gift shops that make it fun, easy and affordable to couple shopping with supporting Arizona arts and culture.

– Lynn

Note: Find Tempe Center for the Arts at www.tempe.gov/tca, Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts at www.scottsdaleperformingarts.com, the Phoenix Art Museum at www.phxart.org, the Heard Museum at www.heard.org and the Musical Instrument Museum at www.themim.org. Find Roosevelt Row at www.rooseveltrow.org and Local First AZ at www.localfirstaz.com.

Coming up: Dance meets father/daughter time, Performing arts meets pajamas

Art meets Americas

It’s the inaugural year of a biannual festival presented by the CALA Alliance — which champions the importance of Latino art and culture, from both North and South America, to Arizona.

Alliance partners include the Arizona Latino Art and Cultural Center (ALAC), which has an exhibit and performance venue called “Galleria 147″ just across the street from Symphony Hall in Phoenix. Also XICO, which promotes Chicano artists. And Chicano Por La Casa (CPLC), which works to empower families in economically deprived communities.

Teatro Bravo presents a play about Frida Kahlo as part of the fall CALA festival

“Celebracion Artistica de las Americas,” also dubbed the “CALA festival,” takes place at various venues Sept 16-Nov 6, 2011. Its mission is “to create shared arts experiences that encourage cultural understanding between people of the Americas.”

Several arts and cultural organizations were selected through a jury process and given awards of various sizes to present their works during this fall’s festival.

These organizations include the Arizona Latino Arts and Cultural Center (ALAC), the Children’s Museum of Phoenix, the Cultural Coaltion, the Desert Botanical Garden, the Heard Museum, the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM), the New Carpa Theater Company, the Phoenix Art Museum, the Phoenix Boys Choir, the Scottsdale Cultural Council, the Scottsdale International Film Festival, Teatro Bravo! and XICO.

Festival offerings will include visual art, theater, music, film, dance, poetry and more. Many include experiences and hands-on activities for youth. Two educational initiatives, supported by Target (the festival’s presenting sponsor), are expected to reach thousands of Valley school children.

Phoenix Art Museum docents will read a book about artist Diego Rivera to students who will then get to take home their own copy of the book. They’ll also create their own mural. Childsplay will perform “The Sun Serpent” by Jose Cruz Gonzeles for students, some of whom have never before experienced live theater.

Children. Creavity. Collaboration. Community.

Cool.

– Lynn

Note: Learn more at www.calaalliance.org. Head to “First Fridays” at ALAC Fri, Sept 2, for a 6pm-10pm line-up that includes visual artists Juan Chawuk and Carlos Navarrete, poet Maria Rodriguez-Pope, filmmaker Valeria Fernandez, dance group Ballet Folklorico Esperanza, musician Cisco Arvallo and a Teatro Bravo presentation of “Frida.” 

Coming up: Celebrating “Day of the Dead” arts and culture style, Orchestral dreams, Student discount alert!