The metro Phoenix arts scene has changed a lot in 2017, as various venues that exhibit art open, close, or evolve. Here’s a look back at the year’s most significant changes in the local gallery world, including several openings for all-new art spaces.
Artist and curator Nicole Royse opened Royse Contemporary in downtown Scottsdale in September, after several years spent curating exhibitions for several Valley arts venues, including monOrchid in Roosevelt Row and the former Willo North Gallery. Royse Contemporary presents solo and group exhibitions, primarily featuring established Phoenix artists.
In September, Emily Costello and Kathy Cano-Murillo opened a new studio and exhibition space, where they’re making art, holding classes, and exhibiting their work, along with work by Kathy’s husband and fellow artist Patrick Murillo. Mucho Mas is located behind a boutique called Galeana 39, and part of the McDowell Market building that’s also home to Palabras Bilingual Bookstore.
Jacques and Raquel Barbey of Phoenix opened a new 6,000-square-foot gallery space in downtown Scottsdale in October. It's designed to serve as a hybrid exhibition and pop-up gallery space. The first pop-up exhibition featured photographs by New York artist Bob Carey, who's best known for his self-portraits in pink tutus that help raise awareness for breast cancer.
The Arizona Artist Collective, an organization founded in 2016 by Prescott- and Ahwatukee-based artist Miriam Carlson-Maier, opened the Grotto Gallery in October. It’s located inside the FABRIC building, which was previously a performance space used by Childsplay and Stray Cat Theatre. The building also houses several fashion-based enterprises. Grotto Galley mainly will show works by members of its own artist collective.
Located inside the Onyx Arts and Events space just off Grand Avenue, the gallery formally opened in October with an exhibition of portraits painted by Hugo Medina, a Phoenix-based muralist whose work graces several downtown buildings including Modified Arts and the Renaissance Hotel.
The newest gallery to join the arts scene along Grand Avenue, Sisao is located inside the Oasis on Grand building that houses live/work spaces for creatives. The gallery officially opened in November, with a solo exhibition of work by Jeff Slim, who addresses the contemporary landscape through the lens of Navajo perspectives and pop culture. The gallery is managed by artist Robert Gentile, who co-founded the adjacent Grand ArtHaus venue.