Beyond the holiday lights, craft projects, and hours of perfectionist gift-wrapping, there are a handful of budget-friendly breaks you can take from the bustle of December. From an early-morning museum experience to a comedic geek-out and an artist's look at innards, here are five things to do this weekend for $10 or less. Have a bigger budget to play with? See New Times' curated calendar of events.
Sunrise in the Skyspace
When Drake debuted his video for “Hotline Bling,” the art world had mixed reactions. See, either Drizzy was paying homage to Arizona artist James Turrell (specifically, a show the light artist had presented at LACMA) or he was straight ripping Turrell off with those pinks, purples, and stairs. However you interpret it, you should know that you can experience (or, as Drake would say, “fuck with”) Turrell’s work year-round in the Valley via his skyspaces, best described as structures in which viewers experience the movement of light. There’s one at Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, 7374 East Second Street, where museum officials will host an early-bird experience called Sunrise in the Skyspace at 6:30 a.m. on Friday, December 16. Do it for the realest in the game right now — or just because you enjoy art. Irish coffee and pastries will be provided. Tickets are $10, but museum members get in free. See details at www.smoca.org. Becky Barkowski
Re-Imagined Indigenous Ceremonies
Indigenous artist collective Radio Healer hacks and repurposes objects from welding masks to video game remote controls to reimagine indigenous ceremonies for contemporary times. Collective members include Cristóbal Martinez, who is also part of the Postcommodity collective that will be showing work during the 2017 Whitney Biennial in New York.
See Radio Healer: Re-Imagined Indigenous Ceremonies from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Friday, December 16, at Pueblo Grande Museum, 4619 East Washington Street. The free multimedia performance blends amplified experimental sound, live music, oversized video projections filmed throughout the Valley, and movement.
Radio Healer is performing its newest work, titled Animal Mother Moves the Four Winds of Rush Hour, which uses rush-hour traffic as a metaphor for movement while exploring sex, violence, and other elements of contemporary society. After the performance, you can check out the collective’s impressive collection of hacked tools, regalia, and indigenous instruments. Visit www.calaalliance.org. Lynn Trimble
Bill Dambrova takes on the biology of being in his new collection, “Resilient Bodies.”
A medley of abstraction, artistic license, and scientific interpretation, “Resilient Bodies” is a painter’s study in how we work, using vibrant colors and shapes to explore cell structure. A free artist reception and showing will be held on Third Friday, December 16, from 6 to 10 p.m.The exhibition remains on view through December at Chartreuse — and was expected to be the gallery’s last. But instead of closing, the art space inside Bragg’s Pie Factory at 1301 Grand Avenue is merging with neighboring letterpress studio Hazel & Violet — making “Resilient Bodies” a creative, “see you soon” sign-off until Chartreuse reopens next year.
Contact 480-544-2162 or www.chartreuseart.com for details or to schedule private viewings. Janessa Hilliard
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Star Wars Weekend
If you’ve ever secretly contemplated the logistics of a Jabba the Hut visit to the proctologist, then you might want to stop by the Star Wars Weekend at Mesa’s National Comedy Theatre, 1111 South Longmore. The two-day event will feature Valley comedians riffing on Star Wars themes in a competitive comedy format à la Whose Line is it Anyway? Dressing up in your finest Lucas-inspired garb will save you $2 at the door, but will likely heighten your risk of unsolicited audience participation. So on the off-chance you find yourself romantically involved with an Ewok who is in fact a diminutive stranger, you might want to rethink the risqué Princess Leia look. Just sayin’. Laugh it up during the all-ages event at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, December 17. Tickets are $12 to $14, or $10 with costume. Visit nctphoenix.com or call 602-374-5638 for details. Rob Kroehler
Cumbias in a Time of Silencio
It’s been a rough year in several communities for many reasons. For those feeling the sociopolitical weight, it might be nice to take a brief breather, come together, and refresh for a year (or more) of hard work ahead. That’s exactly why the Phoenix Youth Hostel and Cultural Center is hosting a soul-cleansing dance night called Cumbias in a Time of Silencio. With music courtesy of DJs Musa Mind and Cesar Morales, the celebration will aim to rejuvenate the community with food, drink, dancing, and, of course, a heavy dose of ca-ca-ca-cumbia. Jump in the line on Saturday, December 17, beginning at 8 p.m. at the hostel, 1026 North Ninth Street. For more information on Phoenix Youth Hostel and its events, visit www.phxhostel.org. Heather Hoch