Step beneath the domed, packed-mud ceiling of a traditional Navajo family dwelling. Weave a Yavapi burden basket. Explore a secluded garden filled with bronze sculptures of women in prayer. By immersing visitors in Native American artifacts and artworks, the Heard Museum's exhibits strive to illuminate the cultural legacy of Arizona’s indigenous peoples. The collections emphasize first-person accounts of Native cultures, not only through artwork, but also in interviews with Native Americans, portraits by Navajo photographers, and monthly lectures. In addition to showcasing historical artifacts, the Heard Museum exhibits contemporary American Indian artwork. Like a ballerina trapped on a carousel, exhibits rotate often, and have included collections of Native American bolo ties, Hopi pottery, and 20th-century paintings depicting Native ceremony. Passing on cultural traditions to future generations, the staff educates children with tours, and brings Native American presentations and curricula to area schools.
More than 17,000 pieces from the Americas, Europe, and Asia have landed here—one of the largest art museums in the Southwest. Besides paintings and photographs, the collection includes thousands of historical and contemporary garments by world-famous fashion designers. For kids ages 6 to 10, the museum even provides "KidPacks"—backpacks full of activity cards and puzzles.
Barbara Becker?the owner of Art for Fun! Studio and Gallery and an artist herself?believes that anyone can learn art. She welcomes students of all skill levels into her cheerful studio, where they work with media such as watercolors, acrylics, and ceramics while receiving one-on-one instruction. Kids and teens can also join in on the creative celebration during special classes or private parties.