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Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum

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Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum is the exciting visual art exhibition space at Mesa Arts Center. In five stunning galleries, MCAM showcases curated and juried exhibitions of contemporary art by emerging and internationally recognized artists. MCAM also offers lectures by significant artists and arts professionals, art workshops, and a volunteer docent program.

CURRENT EXHIBITS:

• thru March 19, 2017 ~ Alternative Beauty: The Work of Karen Jilly  

A 25-year survey, this exhibition features the career of artist Karen Jilly. Known for her beautiful yet gritty paintings, drawings and prints of urban landscapes, Jilly captures architectural elements that are often ignored or overlooked in a metropolitan setting.  Focusing on the lines and structures created by freeway columns, telephone poles, and construction scaffolding, her images evoke a sense of time and transformation, and serve as a metaphor for the fragility of life. *Karen Jilly is a 2016 proposal winner.

rethinking fire

• January 20 – April 9, 2017 ~ Rethinking Fire by Bryan David Griffith

Flagstaff artist Bryan David Griffith explores the issues behind the rise of catastrophic wildfires by using fire itself to create abstract paintings, sculptures and installations. Griffith challenges traditional Western notions of opposed dualities, like light vs. darkness, life vs. death, and forest vs. fire. He argues that these forces are not in conflict, but instead, work together as a necessary part of nature’s continuous cycle—a cycle that has been dangerously disrupted by human impacts ranging from land management policies to climate change. *Bryan David Griffith is a 2016 North Gallery proposal winner. His work appears courtesy of Bentley Gallery.

high tension

• January 20 – April 9, 2017 ~ High Tension by Bonnie Lambert

A cityscape oil painter from Los Angeles, Bonnie Lambert is inspired by the intense color and energy found in Southwestern cities. With a vibrant palette and expressive brushstrokes, Lambert captures the essence of an urban experience as well as the tension between nature and man-made structures on the landscape. Lambert focuses on objects that are so common that they’ve become invisible, including powerlines, telephone poles and transmission towers, portraying them during the “magic hour” so they are viewed in a new light. *Bonnie Lambert is a 2016 proposal winner.

contemporary arts

• February 10 – April 23, 2017 ~ 38th Annual Contemporary Crafts

Highlighting the finest in contemporary crafts from across the country, Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum’s Annual Contemporary Crafts exhibition has become a benchmark for innovation and quality. Representative of traditional craft mediums including ceramics, fibers, basketry, metals, wood, glass, jewelry, papermaking and book arts, this exhibition showcases 52 artworks by 48 artists, representing 19 states. *Guest Juror for the 38th Annual Contemporary Crafts exhibition was Stefanie Jacobson Kirkland, Director of Exhibitions and Artists-In-Residence Programs at Craft Alliance Center of Art + Design in St. Louis, MO. 

undesirables

• February 10 – April 23, 2017 ~ The Undesirables by Katy Bergman Cassell

South Carolina artist Katy Berman Cassell’s jewelry explores the interdependence of humans with the biological and botanical worlds. In her latest series, Undesirables, Cassell refers to fungus, fossils, wilted flowers and insects – the parts of nature that humans oftentimes find unpleasant. By transforming these “base” forms into jewelry, which are conventionally seen as enhancing adornments, her work becomes a reminder of our ephemeral existence and the beauty found in the unending cycle of life. *Katy Bergman Cassell is the 37th Annual Contemporary Crafts exhibition Juror’s Choice winner.