Canal Convergence, Cultural Curation and Green Living
Art + Water + Light
On Nov. 6-15, Scottsdale will host the third annual Canal Convergence public art exhibit. This curation of large-scale and interactive works from artists around the world aims to bring messages of community, inclusion and sustainability while using the entire city as its platform. This year, the project has expanded from a waterfront collection to an immersive experience throughout much of downtown Scottsdale, allowing for socially distant—and even drive-by—viewership. The emphasis on public health and safety also led to an innovative use of alternate reality technology: attendees can now use a mobile AR phone app to view artists explaining their creations while standing beside them.
“We really want to focus on everyone being able to put their differences aside, come together and have these shared experiences through public art,” says Jennifer Gill, public art manager for Canal Convergence. “People can look at the works and see how they connect to their environment, their city, their neighbors, their friends and their families in a variety of different ways.” (canalconvergence.com)
Experience the heritage of the Americas at Tucson Museum of Art’s newest annex: the Kasser Family Wing. The Art of Ancient Americas exhibit debuted with the museum’s reopening in late July and features more than 10,000 artifacts from the Maya, Aztec, Moche and Wari civilizations. The collection honors Pre-Columbian Latin America while bridging the past and present through the inclusion of modern Latinx art alongside these ancient relics.
Kristopher Driggers, the exhibit’s curator, says the museum’s goal was to make ancient American culture accessible to anyone, telling about the people and time periods through fundamental stories, ranging from class status and religion to politics and warfare. “Where we could,” he notes, “we were looking to make that connection to the past and show that these cultures still matter to artists today.” (tucsonmuseumofart.org)
Award-winning architecture firm Studio Ma has debuted a cutting edge new compound of sustainably built homes in Arcadia. Designed to honor such iconic architects as Frank Lloyd Wright and Al Beadle, The Hollyhock residential complex offers 11 sleek townhouses. In addition to low water-use xeriscaping and a covered parking structure built to house solar panels, the development features contemporary homes that utilize an insulated, eco-friendly materials palette of natural wood, cooling concrete and low-emissivity glass, allowing residents to live “super green.”
Principal designer Chris Alt says the minimalist floor-to-ceiling glass entryways and integrated patios were not only designed to bring the outdoors in, in true Beadle style, but also to create a sense of community and openness among neighbors.
“We have benches in front of every unit where your neighbor might sit down and chat for a few minutes as you’re coming and going,” Alt says. “I think that’s what is really unique about the project—The Hollyhock involves that idea of a more neighborly community, with outdoor spaces for everybody.” (thehollyhock.net)