2301 N. Central Ave.
Phoenix, AZ 85004
Fax: 602 252-9757
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The internationally acclaimed Heard Museum is one of the best places to experience the myriad cultures and art of American Indians of the Southwest. Located on Central Avenue in downtown Phoenix, the museum hosts 200,000 visitors a year and "provides Indian artists with a wonderful home that will excite and inspire visitors from around the world," according to Arizona Highways. The museum's 11 spacious exhibit galleries and beautiful outdoor courtyards feature outstanding traditional and contemporary American Indian art. The Heard Museum Shop offers an array of authentic Native art, while the Berlin Gallery features outstanding contemporary fine art for purchase. The Cafe whips up tasty Southwest-inspired salads, sandwiches and soups; visit the Cantina for gourmet coffee drinks and snacks.
- Distance from Downtown Phoenix (in miles): 2
- Distance from Sky Harbor International Airport (in miles): 8
This groundbreaking exhibit explores the controversial 1879 U.S. federal government mandate designed to "civilize," assimilate, and Americanize American Indian children by sending them to Indian boarding schools. Learn how Native children were separated from their families and often stripped of cultural identity and language. Through sounds from the past, poignant black-and-white photomurals, and the voices and words of boarding school attendees, this moving exhibit traces the history and evolution of the American Indian boarding school experience.
Perfect for families and school groups, this interactive gallery invites visitors to learn more about the past, present and future of Arizona’s 21 federally recognized tribal communities. From the importance of land and family to the preservation of languages and traditions, We Are! opens a door on the contemporary worlds of Native America.
In 1929, Dwight Heard and Maie Bartlett Heard founded the Heard Museum, establishing what has become an internationally recognized center for Native cultures and art. This exhibit traces the museum’s history of more than seven decades, offering a glimpse into the Heard’s unparalleled collections of American Indian art and cultural materials with an emphasis on the Southwest.
This long-term exhibit features paintings, sculpture, jewelry, baskets, katsina dolls and pottery from the renowned Heard Museum collection. The show contains a wide-ranging selection of pieces that reveal how individual artists create work that changes in response to new stimuli. See how work from multiple generations of artists bridges both a past rich in tradition and a dynamic and changing American Indian culture.
Explore chocolate, chili and cochineal dye, which will be celebrated through both art and special programs during this exhibit (including a giant cacao tree in the gallery!). These three products of the Western Hemisphere have added beauty and zest to the lives of people around the world. The merits of chocolate and chili should be at once recognizable. Cochineal is a red dye made from insects that feed on cactus from the genus Opuntia, and has been prized throughout the world since the 15th century. Cochineal was used to dye bayeta cloth, and the yarns of the cloth became prized fibers for Navajo weavers. The rich crimson dye also colored the paint used in Hispanic retablo and bulto art. These three contributions to the world are in the vein of recent popular books 1491 and 1493 by Charles C. Mann.
Since the mid-20th century, American Indian fashion and design have reinforced Native identity and provided a platform for Native expression. The exhibit, which will be on display at our Heard Museum North Scottsdale community campus, will use clothing and accessories from the Heard collection and other private collections to examine how materials, design, style and accessories honor tradition and create innovative statements on Native identity and culture. Featured artists include legendary Cherokee designer Lloyd Kiva New, Virgil Ortiz (Cochiti) and other acclaimed artists.
The Heard journeys beyond the Southwest in this exhibit, which has been expanded from its original showing at Heard Museum North Scottsdale. Ledger book drawing began in the late 19th century when, as a legacy of warfare, the U.S. government was placing Native people on reservations. The tribes that were relocated were largely tribes of the Great Plains, and many of their cultures had traditions of recording events on animal hides using natural pigments. Confined to a reservation or faced with imprisonment, Indians turned to the materials they had available to them - ledger books and pencils, provided by traders and government agents - to record events and past achievements in their lives. The tradition has continued through the years as contemporary artists create stories and scenes inspired by these artists from long ago.
The Houser/Haozous Family: Celebrating a Century pays homage to the birth of a child and a modern Indian nation through the art of an acclaimed family of artists. In 1914, the Chiricahua Apache people were released from their status of prisoners of war and given allotments of land in and around Fort Sill, Oklahoma. Some headed west to join the Mescalero Apache in New Mexico, while other Chiricahuas stayed to claim land allotments in Oklahoma. Eventually, this group of Apaches was recognized as the modern Fort Sill Apache Tribe. Shortly after, Allan Houser, who would grow to become one of the century’s greatest American Indian artists, was born at Fort Sill, Oklahoma on June 30. The exhibit commemorates these anniversaries of creativity and freedom through art of Allan Houser and sons Bob Haozous and Phillip Haozous. The stories and art of Fort Sill Apache prisoners of war has long served as inspiration for this family’s art.
This event showcases a unique sport. Prepare for stunning performances of the men and women who are vying to call themselves World Champion Hoop Dancer. The event combines artistry, sheer athleticism and cultural traditions to create an exciting, colorful and suspenseful competition. During performances, dancers will incorporate speed and agility as they manipulate their bodies through one to more than 50 hoops. Some dancers also incorporate creative designs and difficult manipulations of the hoops to present unique variations of the dance. Through the hoop dance, accompanied by either Northern or Southern drums, the performers express distinct cultural traditions, as they are judged on a variety of categories.
Experience one of the Southwest’s largest and most prestigious events: the Heard Museum Guild Indian Fair and Market. This year, celebrate the rich musical tradition of tribes and the hand-crafted instruments used for tuneful expression. Meet Signature Artist Stetson Honyumptewa, an award-winning Hopi katsina doll carver, and experience "live mural" painting. Celebrate the rich musical tradition of tribes and the hand-crafted instruments used for tuneful expression. The Indian Fair features more than 600 top American Indian artists. Visitors get firsthand access to artists and can view and purchase handmade, authentic work by the best jewelers, sculptors, painters, potters, weavers, bead workers, katsina doll carvers and basket makers. Fair weekend also includes music by recording artists, cultural dance performances, art demonstrations, and chefs demonstrating culinary uses of native ingredients. The Indian Fair and Market is the museum’s largest annual fundraiser.