Your Guide to Scottsdale Contemporary Month

By local contributor
Jennifer Duffy

This fall, Scottsdale Contemporary Month shines with color and vibrancy that rival even the most vivid spring bloom. From Oct. 26 through Nov. 25, 2019, this unique collection of immersive art experiences, innovative programming and exciting special events turns the city into a veritable hotbed of art, design and architecture.

There’s plenty to see and do, so we’ve collected a few can’t-miss highlights, as well as some recommendations for nearby lodging and dining options to help you make the most of Scottsdale Contemporary Month! 



During Canal Convergence (Nov. 8-17), the Scottsdale Waterfront, which flanks the Arizona Canal in Old Town, comes to life with large-scale public art installations curated from artists around the globe. Featured artist Squidsoup will suspend Standing Wave, formed from 600 orbs of light and sound above the canal. Through motion sensors and microcomputers, the orbs act in choreographed harmony.

Squidsoup will also install Murmation at Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA), which will be on display through spring 2020. Scottsdale residents might remember the highly successful Ocean of Light: Submergence Squidsoup exhibit, which was on display at SMoCA in summer 2017.

At the Larsen Art Auction (Oct. 26), celebrity auctioneer Jason Brooks seeks out the highest bidders for outstanding works of modern and contemporary art on consignment at the gallery.

Film buffs won’t want to miss award-winning films from around the world at the Scottsdale International Film Festival (Nov. 1-10). During its run, the festival has showcased more than 600 films ranging from Academy Award winners and indie gems to comedies and documentaries.



If you love all things retro chic, opt for the iconic midcentury modern Hotel Valley Ho and you’ll be steps from the action in Old Town.

Looking for breathtaking views? Book a stay at Omni Scottsdale Resot & Spa at Montelucia. Drawing its design from the South of Spain, this luxury hotel is nestled at the base of Camelback Mountain. 

Maximize your budget at the The Scott Resort, a boutique hotel inspired by the colors and comforts of Old Havana. 

For a see-and-be-seen ambiance, check into the W Scottsdale in the heart of Old Town’s Entertainment District.



Olive & Ivy offers Mediterranean-inspired food with a picture-perfect patio overlooking the Arizona Canal.

LDV Winery Tasting Room, on the south banks of the Arizona Canal, is connected to the self-guided Scottsdale Wine Trail, which features Arizona Wineries with tasting rooms in Old Town Scottsdale. Be sure to check out all six! 

Craft 64 serves up wood-fired pizza and craft Arizona beers. But, don't expect your average pizza joint. Tucked away in a historic home in Old Town Scottsdale, Craft 64 makes as much as it can in house and offers unique pizzas like the Aji - topped with spicy jalapeno sauce.