When the fall finally makes its return to Arizona, the season is celebrated less for the crisp autumn weather—which really doesn’t make an appearance until November— and more for the art exhibitions, long-awaited theater and ballet performances, flea markets and craft fairs that seamlessly fill the streets on weekends and attract visitors from all across the southwest. While things are expected to look a bit different this year, there are still plenty of fall arts exhibitions, shows and galleries that can be enjoyed—even if only from the comforts of your own home. Here’s a glimpse of what to expect.
Art Galleries & Exhibitions
First Fridays in Phoenix are made for walking Roosevelt Row, seeing interactive art up-close, and shopping all of the unique vendors that line the street. This year, fans of the monthly Downtown Phoenix art walk can join in on the fun virtually, as the Roosevelt Row Community Development Corporation has created a 360-degree Google Street View tour. This initiative helps to support the local artists that are unable to showcase their work via in-person exhibits. There’s also a digital store which will feature the artwork of more than 20 vendors—all of which is available for purchase. For more information, visit rooseveltrow.org/first-friday-virtual-tour.
Unlike so many other local studios, this Phoenix gallery is currently open to the public, and is currently showcasing the “$2,500 x 18” exhibition—which features pieces developed specifically by artists during the pandemic. A portion of the sales from the exhibition will be donated to Artlink as a contribution to support the organization’s work to host community-based exhibitions and events. For more information, visit www.bentleygallery.com.
The Heard Museum
The museum recently debuted its largest exhibition of contemporary art, titled “Larger Than Memory: Contemporary Art from Indigenous North America,” which features more than 40 works of art by 24 Indigenous artists. Featured pieces in the exhibition include artwork from Nanobah Becker, Brian Jungen, Steven Yazzie, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith and many others. For more information, visit www.heard.org.
Phoenix Art Museum
Phoenix Art Museum will open to its members Oct. 1, followed by opening for the public Oct. 14. (Dates are subject to change.) Guests will be welcomed back safely with a number of new installations and exhibitions, including Stories of Abstraction: Contemporary Latin American Art in the Global Context, featuring Latin American abstract art, and Teresita Fernández: Elemental. For more information, visit www.phxart.org.
Theater & Dance Performances
The company has removed all in-person shows through the end of the fall performance calendar, which included beloved productions like Contemporary Moves, Giselle, and The Nutcracker. Ballet Arizona’s artistic director, Ib Andersen, is crafting new choreography routines that honor social distancing recommendations, and that can be enjoyed digitally. The company is set to release their schedule for digital program offerings in September. For more information, visit www.balletaz.org.
The Arizona Opera is set to produce a “reimagined” 2020/21 season, which will offer live, outdoor, socially distanced performances, combined with a collection of digital offerings intended to expand Arizona Opera’s impact throughout the state and beyond. The season will kick off in October with outdoor performances by members of Arizona Opera’s prestigious Marion Roose Pullin Opera Studio. The performances will also be streamlined for those who wish to watch from the comfort of their home. For more information, visit www.azopera.org.
The famed theater company has rescheduled the bulk of their most popular shows for next year’s season, with productions like Hamilton, Mean Girls, and To Kill A Mockingbird, all postponed until further notice. However, Gammage is still offering a number of free, digital performances that can be viewed on select dates. For more information, visit www.asugammage.com.