The 10 Best Art Shows in Metro Phoenix in 2016

Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum featured work by California artist Kristin Beeler.EXPAND
Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum featured work by California artist Kristin Beeler.
Kristin Beeler

“Archive of Rag and Bone”
Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum
April 29 through August 7

California artist Kristin Beeler’s series featuring portraits of scarred bodies and hand-embroidered Tyvek garments created space for gallery-goers to reflect on their own physical and emotional scars — and to consider the impact of collective scars within communities. Using objects created with mother-of-pearl, silver, and charcoal, Beeler explored the contrasting aesthetics of perfection and imperfection.

ASU Art Museum presented artists influenced by Ana Mendieta.EXPAND
ASU Art Museum presented artists influenced by Ana Mendieta.
Antonia Wright/Photo by Lynn Trimble

“Energy Charge: Connecting to Ana Mendieta”
ASU Art Museum
September 24 through December 31

Through her synthesis of personal and political explorations of race and gender with emerging art forms of the 1970s, including body art and land art, Cuban-born American artist Ana Mendieta has influenced generations of artists. This exhibition reveals her influence on contemporary artists including Ana Teresa Fernández, Kate Gilmore, Simone Leigh, Gina Osterloh, and Antonia Wright.

Phoenix Art Museum exhibited works by Horacio Zabala.EXPAND
Phoenix Art Museum exhibited works by Horacio Zabala.
Horacio Zabala/Photo by Lynn Trimble

“Horacio Zabala: Mapping the Monochrome”
Phoenix Art Museum
October 19, 2016 through March 12, 2017

Trained as an architect, Argentine-born conceptual artist Horacio Zabala explores the way space is defined through narrative, architecture, and cartography. Through this cross-section of his historical and contemporary work, which includes pieces created in conversation with Phoenix, gallery-goers encounter his reflections on censorship, art history, and socio-political issues.

Robrt Pela curated an exhibition featuring new works by Annie Lopez.EXPAND
Robrt Pela curated an exhibition featuring new works by Annie Lopez.
Annie Lopez/Photo by Lynn Trimble

“Annie Lopez: True Blue”
Walter Art Gallery
November 3 through 28

Working with cyanotype photographs created on tamale paper reflecting her Latino heritage, Phoenix artist Annie Lopez poignantly addresses family history, personal memories, and social commentary. For this exhibition presented by R. Pela Contemporary Art, Lopez made smaller-scale works that signal an exciting evolution in her art practice.

Chartreuse gallery exhibited works by Laura Spalding Best.
Chartreuse gallery exhibited works by Laura Spalding Best.
Laura Spalding Best/Photo by Lynn Trimble

“Inferior Mirage”
Chartreuse
November 4 through 27

While creating oil paintings on found objects, Phoenix-based artist Laura Spalding Best explores her interests in both exploring mundane iconography and quantifying place. For this exhibition, she painted scenes of real and fictional landscapes in and around Phoenix, most forcing viewers to confront the risks posed by disregard for water and other resources at the heart of everyday life.


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