Downtown: Phoenix Art Museum

Made in China

The Phoenix Art Museum is a kid friendly place in downtown Phoenix. My kids are not the best behaved in the world but if you can master “don’t touch” and “don’t run” then this museum gives them plenty to enjoy. They have a children’s area that has magnets, easels and the most cunning mural instruction on how to create art in “The Best Method” by Adolfo Best-Maguard. I just loved that and of course had to learn more so I picked up the book, which I highly recommend for anyone interested in design principles. And keeping it real, they have dramatic stairs that my boys happily climb up and down more times than you could imagine.

We like to visit when they have music. We spend some time in the children’s area but we also love the exhibits and sculptures. I like to ask the boys “Which one is yours?” or “Who are you in this picture?” or ask them what is the prettiest, darkest, meanest, happiest, etc. It gives us something to have a give and take about and it makes them look at the pictures more closely. Since I began reading local history, I’ve learned more about two works in their collection, they have a glossy black sculpture that looked like puddles of black rock. It was so shiny even I wanted to touch it, it is called Apache Tears (?) –I can’t find a link to the actual sculpture, but it was a work that stayed with me before I had any idea what it meant. Another picture La Malinche by Alfredo Ramos Martinez has a fascinating back story, you should ask a docent to tell you. I learned the story during my Art Masterpiece Training and the story gave me the chills. Since no one knows what La Malinche looked like, she is represented in scores of ways, I scrolled through Google images and enthralled by her enduring story of survival. These are just two pieces that caught my imagination. I know everything there has a story. This is a place to dip into again and again, truly a lovely museum.

The current exhibit I would like to see is the Sacred Word and Image, Five World Religions.

Parking is free and every Wednesday from 3 to 9PM is voluntary donation day. Or free if you like. They have other deals for admission, including free admission for Bank of America customers on the first full weekend of every month, check the website hours for specific information. Do you have a favorite picture at the museum?

The Traitor by Alfredo Ramos Martinez

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