Visual Arts

7 Must-See Art Shows in Downtown Phoenix on Third Friday, June 19

We’re about as giddy as we ever get this time of year, thanks to this summer’s magnificent dearth of exhibitions curated around the topic of heat. We get that it’s hot here, so we’re not looking for reminders. Instead, we’re looking for escapes. This month’s Third Friday offerings include a cool assortment of shows happening in places plenty of people have yet to explore. This is the month to check off a few new boxes on your must-see list, so you’ll have better “what I did over summer vacation” stories than the people who fly the Phoenix coop when triple digits soar.

Tempe artist JJ Horner, one of several artists whose eye-catching mural work you’ll find on the north-facing exterior wall of Palabra, is hitting the combo hair salon and gallery on Third Friday for the start of a Pyramid Country journey to the Midwest and beyond. Show up and you’ll be able to see new works by Horner, which include paintings and sculpture, and groove with live music by Late Night Link, The Ketchup Inspector, and John Dust. Third Friday happenings get underway at 8 p.m. Find more information on the Pyramid Country Facebook page.

“Old Gum, New Work, Strawz, and Stuff From Europe”
Mimi Jardin, whose art practice incorporates items most would consider trash, opens a solo exhibition Friday at Eye Lounge. It's been a while since we spotted Jardin along the Scottsdale Waterfront, where she was pushing around a shopping cart with clipboard in hand, inviting Canal Convergence visitors to find a piece of trash to add to her growing collection for the Office of Environmental Responsibility. We’re eager to see what she’s happened upon since then. Third Friday’s opening reception takes place from 6 to 10 p.m. Find more information on the Eye Lounge Facebook page.

“6 Sides”
The Firehouse invited six artists to curate their own show, populating the unconventional gallery space with pieces that show sides of their work that don’t necessarily translate in more traditional settings. Featured artists include Dan Aponte, Scarlett Decker, Anthony Elias Farias, James Hernandez, Skye Lucking, and Laina McWhorter. We’re especially eager to see McWhorter’s street photography, which captures all sorts of colorful characters with striking perspective. Third Friday’s artist reception takes place from 6 to 9 p.m. Find more information on The Firehouse Facebook page.

“Painted Skies”
Local First Arizona is helping us all get in the mood for National Independents’ Week, which starts on June 27, with a nifty art exhibit featuring works by two artists whose photography celebrates Arizona’s natural and man-made beauty. “Painted Skies” at Modified Arts includes works by Lisa Olson of Practical Art, a gallery and retail space that carries works by more than 100 Arizona artists, and by Terry Pisel, whose art practice includes photography, painting, architecture, and design. There’s a super cool bonus, too. The gallery will also showing works by Tempe printmaker Jake Early, whose art you’ll find installed along Mesa’s Main Street as part of the current IN FLUX cycle of public art. Third Friday’s opening reception takes place from 6 to 9 p.m. Find more information on the Modified Arts Facebook page.

Amanda Adkins, whose work demonstrates versatility and virtuosity, is doing a solo show called “Surrender” at {9} The Gallery. Pieces by women artists will abound along Grand Avenue on Third Friday, as {9} The Gallery also presents a “Summer Solstice” exhibition, plus a “She Deck” exhibition of skateboard decks, at the Frontal Lobe Gallery at Bragg's Pie Factory. Third Friday hours for “Surrender” are 6 to 10 p.m. Find more information on the {9} The Gallery Facebook page.

“Limited Engagement”
After seeing Four Chambers Press deliver lit love with roving writer/readers at Phoenix Art Museum earlier this year, we were super excited to learn they’re now doing Third Friday shindigs at the Melrose District’s Remod at the Hub, located at 4610 North 7th Avenue. This month they’re talking up Valley raconteur Frank Jackson, a former editor for Weave Magazine whose love for writing was born of the words of Kurt Vonnegut and the spirit of Jack Kerouac. An “opening act sort of thing” happens on Third Friday at 7 p.m., and the Four Chambers Press folks start their chat with Jackson at 7:30 p.m. Find more information on the Four Chambers Press Facebook page.

“Order & Chaos”
Now that Xico Arte Y Cultura has moved from Chandler to Phoenix, it’s easy to pop over and show some Third Friday love toward this gallery, which specializes in Latin and Native American arts. Their newest exhibition features “realistic and abstract art” in various media by Edgar Fernandez, Bertica Garcia Dubus, Joseph Holdren, Maria Kane, AJ Natziger, Jessica Paloma, Carolina Parra, Travis Rice, and Anthony Vargas. Third Friday’s opening reception takes place from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Find more information on the Xico Facebook page.

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Lynn Trimble is an award-winning freelance writer and photographer specializing in arts and culture, including visual and performing arts
Contact: Lynn Trimble