Lizards and landscape painters don’t get together that much. It’s understandable: One group strives to capture the majesty of Arizona’s scenery. The other is pretty focused on bugs.
But Saturday, Boyce Thompson Arboretum will bring artists and reptiles together for a morning doublebill. If it sounds eclectic — well, aren’t most families?
"Come for the lizards, stay for the art," the arboretum’s Paul Wolterbeek says with a chuckle.
Lizards lead off first, as Boyce Thompson reprises its popular Lizard Walk.
"This time of year we have a variety of lizards on our trails," Wolterbeek explains. "Kids love lizards. They see them doing push-ups on their block fences, so they’re naturally curious about them." Guest herpetologist Darren Riedle guides families, identifying and describing the reptiles. "And the kids are remarkably good at spotting the lizards themselves," Wolterbeek says.
For kids who’d rather capture the scenery than see what’s under it, Arts in the Park hosts painters and photographers from the Mesa Art League. Beginning at 10 a.m., the group will gather to discuss, show and create new works.
"Burdell Moody, a former arts teacher in the Mesa Public Schools and a very accomplished painter, will be doing a demonstration, offering tips and answering questions," Wolterbeek says. The artists will display paintings and photos, and their work will remain at Boyce Thompson as part of a six-week exhibition. "It’s a great opportunity to see other artists at work, and learn a little about how they practice their craft."