Arts & Culture

Arts and Culture Tempe Center for the Arts

A desire for dance, a passion for theatre and a love of infectious music are easily satisfied in Tempe. Tempe is truly an arts and cultural hub with a full season of Broadway shows, museum exhibits, local theatre productions, arts festivals and more. Public art by local and internationally known artists give beauty and depth to our urban landscapes. Music of all genres can be found on street corners, in clubs, restaurants and theater.


Museums and Galleries

  • Spend some time at the ASU Art Museum where you’ll discover contemporary art  by nationally and  internationally renown artists exhibited in five spacious galleries. Current exhibitions include  A Dream on a Dream: Encounter with Claudio Dicochea, on view through June 2, 2018 and Bajo Presión/Under Pressure, through July 14, 2018.
  • Browse the rows and rows of beautiful ceramic works in the permanent collections of the ASU Ceramics Research Center and Brickyard Gallery. Also on display through September 15, 2018: The Good Making of Good Things: Craft Horizons Magazine 1941–1979 exhibition.
  • Visit The Gallery at the Tempe Center for the Arts.  Step into the Gallery’s refreshingly cool interior this summer to enjoy the exhibit simply titled, draw, from May 25-September 1, 2018.
  • Immerse yourself in Tempe’s fascinating past at the Tempe History Museum. You can trace our history from its beginnings through modern times in the permanent exhibits, interactive displays and rotating exhibits. The Good Making of Good Things: Craft Horizons Magazine 1941–1979, September 15, 2018
  • Take a breathtaking trip into space via the 3-D planetarium style shows in the Marston Exploration Theater, located on the ASU Tempe Campus, Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 2:30 p.m. While you’re there explore the fascinating exhibits on display in the Gallery of Scientific Exploration.

Theater & Music

  • Attend a concert or Broadway musical in Arizona at the beautiful ASU Gammage, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. Upcoming shows include THE HUMANS May 29-June 3, 2018 and  SCHOOL OF ROCK June 19-24, 2018.
  • You’ll get lots of laughs at the Tempe Improv Comedy Club where they’ve been presenting the best comedians for more than two decades. Some favorite comics coming soon are Jay Pharoah and Dan Cummins, Christopher Titus,  Corey Holcomb and Germaine Fowler in May and June.  Cool off at the Tempe Improv Comedy Club in August and July with Rick Gutierrez, Whitney Cummings, Shawn Wayans and Maz Jobrani.
  • Listen to your favorite music performed live in Tempe’s clubs, restaurants and theaters like The Marquee. Coming to the Marquee this summer: Puddle of Mudd, Katchafire and Flatbush Zombies in June: Streetlight Manifest in July; and Rick Ross and CKY in August.
  • Catch a performance at the beautiful Tempe Center for the Arts which overlooks Tempe Town Lake. Upcoming shows include smooth Brazilian jazz by the Diego Figueiredo & Ken Peplowski Duo on May 19, 2018 and Phoenix Amplified Jazz Experience: Contemporary Jazz Saxophonist Paula Atherton on May 26, 2018.

Art outdoors and indoors

Tempe is a true hub of visual arts — you’ll find yourself surrounded by art both indoors and outdoors. While you’re taking a leisurely stroll around Tempe or the beautiful Arizona State University (ASU) Tempe Campus, be on the lookout for art at every turn. And it won’t cost you a cent!

The City of Tempe’s public art collection includes permanent and temporary installations throughout the city, including Downtown Tempe, Tempe Center for the Arts, neighborhoods, pathways, parks, light rail and bus stops. One of the newest additions to downtown is “She Tempe,” a public art project that was commissioned by the Downtown Tempe Authority. Eight local female artists created custom works of art that are installed on news racks along Mill Avenue. Each news rack has a map so visitors can take a self-guided tour of these unique, colorful works of art.

ASU also has one of the best collections of public art from Depression-era murals to contemporary sculpture located throughout the 720-acre campus. A must-see on campus is “Air Apparent,” a Skyspace designed by internationally renowned artist James Turrell.

Use these maps to take a self-guided tour of public art in Tempe:

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