Arizona Arts Alliance, Central Arts Alliance Join Forces, Expand Reach

Phoenix Center for the Arts

Two of the state’s oldest and most respected fine arts institutions are teaming up in an effort to broaden opportunities and increase exposure for Arizona’s immensely talented artisans.

Central Arts Alliance, which operates the Phoenix Center for the Arts, the Thunderbird Arts Center and the Arizona Art Mobile, has announced plans to merge with the Arizona Art Alliance, another local arts industry fixture, to strengthen the arts industry in the state and offer even more benefits and opportunities to those who are a part of it. While the merge will allow the two like-minded organizations to pool their resources and expand services for artists, students, veterans and others with an interest in the state’s thriving arts scene, key programs currently offered by the Arizona Arts Alliance will continue and become available to an even broader audience.

“I think this is an exciting evolution for us both, because both organizations serve artists in very different ways,” said Central Arts Alliance Director Joseph Benesh, “Now, we’ll be merged to do more of what we do better and more efficiently. But, most important to me, is the enhanced benefits we can now provide to the communities we serve, including students of all ages and veterans.”

Jaime Dempsey, the executive director of the Arizona Commission on the arts, noted that the two organizations made the decision to merge not out of necessity, but after recognizing that they shared common purposes, missions and practices. 

“It has been inspiring to watch these two arts organizations engage in the merger-exploration with such openness to the possibilities,” she said. “This merger has not been born out of crisis, it has been born out of vision, strong financial practices, and careful stewardship of resources.”

Michael Brady, the president of the Arizona Art Alliance, echoed this sentiment. “This partnership of our two organizations will generate opportunities for all Arizona artists — new opportunities and new universes to explore,” he said. “The merger of our Visual Art Alliance with the Central Art Alliance will bring the different art mediums together to speak with one loud voice, making our Arizona Community more vibrant and relevant with even more art than ever.”

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