What makes a cultural museum different?
If you’re waiting on local air conditioning repair service in Phoenix and need to get out of the heat, try a museum! One of the very best reasons to visit a cultural museum is for the information and specialization. Cultural museums typically focus on a broad category or zero in on a sub-category of a culture. It’s like the difference between rock and roll music the genre and grunge music. They both cover rock, but one is hyper-focused on a specific type of rock. These museums operate the same way. Visit a general museum for an encompassing cultural experience. If you want to learn in-depth about a specific culture than a specialized museum is the way to go. We’ve identified three of the best cultural museums in Phoenix. Whether you go big or hone in, we have you covered.
The Heard Museum
The mission of the Heard Museum is to advance American Indian art. Located on North Central Avenue and E. Monte Vista Road, there’s no reason you shouldn’t go. Admission is free from 6 – 10 p.m. every first Friday of the month. Exhibits include traveling exhibits like works from Frida Kahlo as well as curated permanent collections. Some of the highlights include:
- The Fashion Collection – It’s easy to forget, but cultures are living things. They never stop advancing. The fashion collection features newly designed high fashion and practical clothing from Native American designers. These incorporate both traditional and modern elements.
- The Basket Collection – Baskets have traditionally served two purposes. They are used as vessels for material goods and creative outlets for the artist. Basket weaving has traditionally been a specialty. The best weavers produced elaborate baskets that incorporated personal and tribe related artistic touches.
Pueblo Grande Museum
The Pueblo Grande Museum focuses exclusively on objects recovered from the Pueblo Grande archeological sites. These pre-Columbian ruins and sites are located within Phoenix city borders. Viewing original artifacts while touring this historic site lets you really get a feel for what life was like for the original inhabitants of the Phoenix area. Highlights include:
- Object Collections – Artifacts have been recovered from the Pueblo Grande site. The museum also includes objects from the more than 300 prehistoric and historic sites across Phoenix. Contemporary items include Native American made objects from across the entire Southwest.
- Documentary Collections – Some of the most interesting pieces are the documents that stretch back to the beginning of excavation. These include everything from maps to notes, sketches, and pictures. There’s so much to view it can be a lot to take in.
- Online Collections – There are multiple online collections available. A great starting point is the Hohokam. View close-up images of artifacts and learn about this unique people.
Arizona Latino Arts & Cultural Center
The Arizona Latino Arts & Cultural Center focuses on Latino artists. Located in the heart of downtown off of E Adams St and 2nds St, it features local modern art in a wide variety of mediums. The museum frequently puts out calls to artists from across the state and country. If you want to see the cutting edge of Latino art, there’s no better place to do it than right here. Highlight include:
- Resident Artists – With a constantly rotating roster of resident artists, you may be able to catch an artist at work. At the very least you’re guaranteed always to find something new when you visit. Because of this, ALAC has become a hub of the art scene in Phoenix.
Now that you know the best cultural spots to go to, you may want to think about what Phoenix restaurants you’ll want to try in-between.