First Friday in Phoenix: 6 Must-See Shows Sept. 6

First Friday heats up tonight with creative works going up all over the city. Here are our picks for shows not to miss this artful evening.

"No Phobia Tattoo Art Show" @ FilmBar Whether it's a heartfelt memento, a meaningful mantra, or a night of too much tequila, every tattoo has a story. Inspired by everything from pop culture to personal experience, body art has at best been thought of as fine art's alternative spinoff. But now the tables are finally turned as downtown's FilmBar debuts its "No Phobia Tattoo Art Show," a monthlong exhibition showcasing tattoo-inspired artwork.

This free show is on display in the colorful FilmBar lounge, featuring the works of thirteen artists including Jason Anthony of Golden Rule Tattoo, Nicole Marie McCord of Urban Art Tattoo, Tariq Sabur of Fine Art For Bodies, Alexis Freeman of Black Lotus Tattooers, Mike Fite of Pride & Glory, and Luke Dorsett of Yakuza Tattoo Photography.

See also: Top 5 Things to Do in Metro Phoenix This Weekend The "No Phobia Tattoo Art Show" opens at 5 p.m. on First Friday, September 6, at 815 North Second Street. The show will remain on display through Thursday, October 3. For more information, call 602-595-9187 or visit www.thefilmbarphx.com.

Artel Phx @ The Clarendon Hotel This week, downtown's favorite midcentury hotel, The Clarendon, is getting a makeover thanks to hotel art exhibition, Artel Phx. The premier pop-up art event will feature the installments of 20 local artists, hand-selected for their designs to transform the commercial space into something entirely new and dynamic.

For one weekend only, the retro resort will be reinvented from the inside out, as artists take their creative media from the lobby to the Sky Deck with installations involving neon sculptures, stained glass, yarn bombing, large scale projections, laser installations, paintings, photography, performance, and more.

Featured artists, performers, and businesses include Perry Allen, Lisa Chow of Desert Dance Theatre, CONDER/dance, Jeff Davis, Epic FX, Travis J Farnsworth, Geoff Gildner, GreenHAÜS, Dagne Hanson, Joseph Mark Hanson, Mark Hughes, Candy Jimenez of Dulce Dance Company, Jamie Korb, Indigeneá, Christy Puetz, Step Raptis of Step's Junk Funk, Mary Shindell, Marshall Shore, Marilyn Szabo, and Steve Weiss. Read more. -- Katie Johnson

"I Was Never Here" @ Skyline Loft Gallery Josh and Sarah Rhodes are a local dream team when it comes to creating; Josh makes art at Subtle Takeover, and Sarah takes pictures at Arrow & Apple.

But this artistic power couple won't be local much longer. Sarah got an offer to work full-time as a photographer for the lifestyle blog A Beautiful Mess, which requires relocation to the Midwest.

We caught up with the pair over coffee at Lux, one of their favorite Phoenix hangouts, to talk about their impending move, their impressions of the Valley, and Josh's farewell show at Skyline Loft Gallery, "I Was Never Here." Read more. -- Katrina Montgomery

"Generation CSA" @ Five15 Mary Shindell comes from a long line of gardeners; for generations, her family farmed land in the Midwest, she says. Though Shindell doesn't exactly garden herself, her latest exhibition "Generation CSA" at Five15 Gallery is an exploration of her own green thumb and a tribute to her family tradition.

Shindell has a background in drawing and printmaking, but she says the transition to digital was more like a step than a leap. "I was already accustomed to working with hard surfaces from my experience with printmaking," she says. "Working with the computer presents its own set of challenges, but the surface of the screen itself wasn't a huge adjustment for me." Read more. -- Katrina Montgomery

"Sex: A Woman's Perpective" @ Frontal Lobe Gallery Let's talk about sex.

Downtown Phoenix is taking a page out of Salt N' Pepa's playbook this month with "Sex: A Woman's Perspective," put together by Beatrice Moore, Grand Avenue's unofficial resident curator. For Moore, popular culture's incessant projections on how women view and enjoy sex drove her to a realization: Why not take these images and instead, empower women through them?

The concept inspired a group of female artists spanning the Valley, whose artistic commentaries, including pieces by Jen Urso and Sue Chenoweth, a mixed-media blow-up doll interpretation by Christy Puetz, and a body painting project by Gingher Leyendecker, are hosted at the Frontal Lobe Community Space and Gallery.

The opening reception is from 6 to 10 p.m. Friday, September 6, and the collection will be on view sporadically throughout the month or by appointment, at 1301 West Grand Avenue. Admission is free. Visit www.facebook.com/events/219166771571498 or call 602-391-4016 for an appointment. -- Janessa Hilliard

"Unraveled" @ Coe House Gallery Every First Friday brings a myriad of artistry to the downtown scene, so this week be sure to look out for the opening of Amanda Adkins' first solo exhibit, "Unraveled," at The Coe House Gallery from 7 to 11 p.m.

Though the artist has painted for more than two decades, she writes in a press release, "I call myself an artist. There are too many artistic forms to experiment with to label myself as just a painter."

"This show is different for me," Adkins says. It not only includes paintings, but a video and three other installation pieces. She seems most excited about the video in which she is tied to a friend with string, representing the evolution of their relationship. She says people should come to her exhibit if for no other reason than to see this video. Read more. -- Alexandria Conrad

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