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Exhibition explores impact of art, artists in metro Phoenix 's growth

September 13, 2006

Works that explore the role of art and visual culture in Phoenix's development as a city defined by astronomical growth, geographic limitations, desert environment and its arts community will be featured in “New American City: Artists Look Forward” at the ASU Art Museum, Sept. 9-Jan. 27.

The exhibition will feature works by 23 Maricopa County artists who explore media, processes and styles that comment on the here and now. Works from this select group of artists will range from installations of land art and art with new technologies to painting and photography that reflect personal impressions of living and working in the Phoenix metropolitan area, as well as broader questions for the future. In conjunction with “New American City: Artists Look Forward,” the museum will employ nontraditional outreach programs to engage a broader audience in conversations about the possibilities to integrate art in the development of Phoenix and support the growth of a vibrant artist community. These will include:

• Networking and professional programs to benefit artists and design professionals living in Maricopa County, including legal clinics and programs on copyright and leasing agreements.

• Art InterAct, an innovative video project in which local high school students interact with artists and art professionals, create three-minute video pieces of their interpretation of “New American City,” and showcase their works in an awards night at the museum.

• City tours that explore a diverse range of urban art spaces with an onboard expert guest lecturer, such as visits to a working farm that doubles as an artist's canvas, artist-generated developments, and studio and warehouse districts.

• Lectures by national leaders in urban issues and the arts with local leaders as respondents, funded by the Maurice R. and Meta G. Gross Foundation.

• Book signings and discussions with local leaders in urban planning, architecture, development and arts issues.

The exhibition will open with a “Welcome Back Students” party, including live music and refreshments, from 7-10 p.m., Sept. 8.

For information about the exhibition and its programs, visit the Web site

Denise Tanguay,