Canal Convergence offers dozens of workshops, performances and more

Light-based works of art are still a major draw for Canal Convergence | Water + Art + Light, but the annual 10-day event also includes a wide variety of creative workshops, thrilling performances, introspective artist talks, captivating augmented reality experiences, educational tours, and food and drink. tasty.

“I can’t wait to experience Canal Convergence at the Scottsdale Waterfront with all the lineup and performances returning,” said Kim Boganey, director of Scottsdale Public Art, which produces the event. “We look forward to seeing you safely at the water’s edge, with a drink in hand and enjoying excellent music, dancing and educational programming!”

This year’s Canal Convergence, November 5-14, 2021, marks the return of in-person programming after the 2020 event, which saw workshops, performances and other aspects of the event move to a virtual format. . However, the 2020 pivot has also sparked new ideas, including the use of augmented reality (AR).

There will be five unique AR experiences this year. Event attendees can take a virtual tour of the history and engineering of the Arizona Canal with the Salt River Project, meet the artists behind the works at this year’s event, explore the stories behind the permanent collection of Scottsdale Public Art and delve into two AR works of art. All AR experiences are accessible on the Hoverlay app, via the + ScottsdalePublicArt channel. Participants must download the free app before visiting Canal Convergence.

“The most exciting for me personally is“ Treasure Hunt: The Missing Artwork Case, ”where you’ll search for AR clues along the waterfront near sculptures designed by robotics students and in Visual Arts from Saguaro High School, ”said Natalie Marsh. , director of Scottsdale Arts Learning & Innovation, which oversees much of Canal Convergence’s programming each year. “Designing this unique experience required a team of artists, students, teachers and software developers, and we hope it’s a fun way to experience the channel ecosystem. “

While technology has long been an important aspect of channel convergence, it is highlighted by this year’s theme “Art and Technology” in collaboration with CODAsummit, which will be hosted by Scottsdale Arts during the second week of Convergence Channel. Marsh said innovation is at the heart of technology and human progress, which is why the organizers of Canal Convergence are thrilled to have the Nationwide Innovation Zone at this year’s event, with over 30 workshops. different for kids, teens and adults.

The Canal Convergence Workshops are facilitated by an incredibly diverse group of local, national and international artists who explore the overlap of art and technology. Visitors will be able to build art-making robots and LED lanterns, contribute to groundbreaking research on drone design, explore various art-making software, and combine science, technology and art using watercolors. . Workshop presenters include several faculty members and researchers from Arizona State University.

Many of the artists behind Canal Convergence’s large-scale installations will also be offering artist talks during the event, though most of these limited engagements are already full. Participants can still hear the artists by accessing behind-the-scenes AR features associated with their work.

Artistic tours of the event are another option to learn more about Canal Convergence’s 12 large-scale works of art this year, five of which are from overseas countries. For more information on the works, visit the event website.

When not discovering the works of art or creating with technology in a workshop, visitors to Canal Convergence can enjoy a little nightlife in the beer and wine garden of Soleri Plaza, which will also offer food trucks on weekends and evening shows.

“As in previous years, our goal has been to invite an eclectic lineup of local musicians and artists to Canal Convergence,” said Abbey Messmer, director of programming at the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, who booked the artists. of this year. “You’ll hear everything from jazz, R&B and country to J-pop, mariachi and folk music. Storytellers are also featured in the lineup, as well as sets by young rockers from the Solid Rock Teen Center. by Alice Cooper. This live music will be the perfect soundtrack to enjoy the beautiful weather and the amazing art. “

In addition to the nightly entertainment on the Soleri Stage, there will be two special dance performances on November 6 and 13 by NicoleOlson | Chaos Movement. Olson’s dances are a living tradition at Canal Convergence, and this year the company will be offering “Aura”, a 20-minute dance piece inspired and performed in the illumaphonium installation “illumaphonium: Halo”.

A few special events at the VIP Lounge offer a different way to enjoy Canal Convergence. On Tuesday, November 9, Scottsdale Arts Young Professionals, Scottsdale Rising Young Professionals and Scottsdale Leadership will converge for an unforgettable evening of art, vibe and networking by the water. Then, on Saturday, November 13, attendees can join Scottsdale Arts ONE members while sipping, savoring and supporting the arts at Canal Convergence’s closing night. Both exclusive events are chargeable.

The full program of events is available online at Artist lectures, tours, and workshops all require registration, and most workshops have a fee to cover material costs. Many opportunities fill up quickly.

Canal Convergence is made possible, in part, by the sponsorship of the City of Scottsdale, Billie Jo + Judd Herberger, SRP, Nationwide, Clearwing Productions, Epson America, Canopy by Hilton Old Town Scottsdale, Christine and Richard Kovach, Magnum Companies and Total Shadow. For a full list of sponsors and other event details, visit For more information on CODAsummit, visit

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