Hoover Dam is an iconic marvel of American engineering. Created to manage the floodwaters of the Colorado River, the dam continues to affect Arizonans’ lives daily. But the Hoover dam is rarely thought of as a significant work of art. Since artists first visited our region, water has been a subject for their work, ranging from rivers and lakes to dams, agriculture and recreation. This program will explore works of art created over the past 150 years, and invite participants to discuss the various ways water is systemic to life in the Arizona deserts, mountains and the Colorado Plateau.
Jim Ballinger is uniquely qualified to lead a conversation about the relationship between water and art, having served as the director of the Phoenix Art Museum for 33 years. During his tenure, the Phoenix Art Museum presented nearly 500 exhibits, 50 of which Ballinger personally organized. Ballinger has a keen interest in the intersection of art and water, and is a nationally respected arts advocate.