Opening September 27th 2023
CIRCA 1930: Memories of the General Store, Feed Sacks, Quilting and More
“Repair, reuse, make-do and don't throw anything away" was the motto for the Great Depression. The heart of the community in those years was often the general store which brought everyone together for laughter, sustenance and mail. This exhibition displays a model General Store with period antiques from this fascinating era when sustainability was the essence of life. Other highlights include 1930s quilts, feed sack dolls and clothing and other essential products from this era. Be prepared to be amazed at the prices!
Closing November 2023
Citizen/Enemy: Japanese American Incarceration Camps
“Citizen/Enemy” describes the tragedy of this political action and the resulting repercussions for Japanese Americans. Large-scale images from noted photographer Dorothea Lange, Russell Lee and others memorialize this period and offer a guide for reflection in the exhibition. Although some reparations were eventually paid to Japanese-Americans, they were never fully compensated for their economic losses or the loss of dignity and freedom.. Many never regained their lost their farms, homes, and livelihoods after incarceration.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt, through his Executive Order 9066, forced approximately 120,000 Americans of Japanese descent, the large majority of whom were American citizens, to leave their homes and property and spend the majority of WWII incarcerated in camps. These camps were located primarily in the interior of the American West including the Gila River War Relocation Center near Phoenix, the Poston Internment Camp, located in Yuma County and the Federal Honor Camp located in the Santa Catalina mountains outside Tucson.
All the Single Ladies: Women Pioneers of the American West
All the Single Ladies: Women Pioneers of the American West tells select stories from these trailblazing women’s lives. Meet unmarried 19th century women homesteaders, Harvey girls, boarding house owners, teachers, madams, prostitutes, and entertainers. Learn how these women brought a richness and vivacity to the fabric of life in an emerging American West.
The Dirty Thirties: New Deal Photography Frames the Migrants' Stories
"The Dirty Thirties" explores the journeys of rural migrants fleeing the Dust Bowl, drought, and economic difficulties during the 1930s. In desperate search for jobs and new opportunities, thousands of former farm owners and ex-tenant farmers left their homes in the Southern Plains states and set off to the cotton fields of Arizona and the “Promised Land” of California, where supposedly work could be found. This exhibit explores why the migrants left, their journey westward, their experiences living and working in Arizona, and what life could be like for those who traveled onto California. Told primarily through the compelling documentary photography taken under the auspices of the New Deal programs of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, some images from this exhibit will likely stay with you throughout your lifetime.
Closing November 2023
Desert Hollywood: Celebrity Landscapes in Cinema
Desert Hollywood explores the “celebrity careers” of prominent Southwestern landscapes in film and television. More than mere backdrops, these landscapes including Monument Valley, the Imperial Sand Dunes, Lake Powell, the Moab area and the Sonoran Desert surrounding Tucson have become familiar, even iconic, through their supporting roles in film. Featuring video clips, stills, and behind-the-scenes photography.
Sacred Walls: Native American Muralism
The Museum celebrates the unique artistry of Native American muralists, via a large mural on the outside wall of the Museum and several floor-to-ceiling murals within the Museum by noted Native American artists including Dose, Dwayne Manuel, Jaque Fragua, & Anitra "Yukue" Molina.
The Dawn of American Landscape
Masterpieces by the preeminent Nineteenth century landscape painters. Works by Albert Bierstadt, Thomas Moran, Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot and other master artists. This collection captures the transcendental spirit of these artists' search and expression of the sublime.
Immerse yourself in the beautiful arts of the Hopi people.
Weavings of The Dance:
Early Yei Textiles
This collection of amazing weavings tells the story of Navajo healing ceremonies.
Cartography of the Americas
Learn about North American history through an impressive collection of vintage maps from the great mapmakers of the new world.
The Weavings of the Diné
A premier collection of pre-1940’s Navajo textiles, including Chief’s blankets, Eye Dazzlers, Saddle blankets, Germantown weavings, Yei weavings and child's blankets.
Arizona Women Uncovered
Who would have guessed! Arizona Women Uncovered offers a unique insight into the lives of early pioneer women through the evolution of their undergarments.
Arizona Women Uncovered was curated in collaboration with Claudine Villardito of Black Cat Vintage.
Teachings of the Spider Woman
Textiles tell stories, and this exhibit helps us to find them in each amazing, uniquely crafted work.