Ugo Rondinone: Seven Magic Mountains, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2016. Photo by Gianfranco Gorgoni. Courtesy of Art Production Fund and Nevada Museum of Art.
Bureaucratic Wall: Artsy goes long form to document the lobbying and negotiation behind "Seven Magic Mountains," a case study on the challenges of art in public space. "The result was that the creation of Seven Magic Mountains required a herculean amount of bureaucratic artistry on both sides, to bridge the divide between two unfamiliar worlds. And the piece is a singular example of the challenges—often invisible in the final work—confronting those who help create public art." Seven Magic Mountains fought the law and the rocks won. ARTSY
Policy Wall: State Senator Tick Segerblom is introducing legislation to get $10 million from the state so that major art museum in Symphony Park an be built, reports KNPR. "Segerblom is amending Senate Bill 187 to obtain the money from the general fund, with this provision: To get the money, it would have to be matched by private donors within the next two years."
'not to be missed": "Where would we be without the Barrick Museum?" writes Dawn-Michelle Baude in Las Vegas Weekly. "Its latest hit, Process, brings 10 artists—a mid-career group with a keen sense of artistic purpose. . . It’s not just what you do: it’s also about how you do it."
Diana Edelman writes "The latest mural by artist Eric Vozzola can’t be seen in the typical public places where his previous large-scale works can be found. In fact, most people will never set eyes on his creation, a magnificent spectrum of rich gem hues that cast the Las Vegas sunset (and Sunrise Mountain) in a myriad of geometric shapes. Why? Because it’s housed in the main hallway of Helen Herr Elementary." Vegas Seven
Photo: Rachel Bellinsky
Busy April: Holly Vaughn shared this photo of her working on a new mural on the alley wall of Vesta Coffee. The prolific public artist is slated to paint her Lone Mountain ZAP box this coming week.
Frida Wall: "As a lifelong resident of Las Vegas, Justin Favela has been influenced by the cultural mash-ups so prevalent there," writes Shannon Robb for Denver Art Museum. "The pastiche of architectural styles and historical references serves as a launch pad for his studio practice."
Wall Talk: The Department of Homeland Security received proposals for President Trump's wall along the border. The designs "vary wildly, from the brutal functionality of proposals that resemble the walls surrounding US Army bases in foreign countries to designs that dress up their nefarious purpose with beneficial features like solar panels or passageways for small animals, to utopian visions that seek to unify the region rather than divide it." Hyperallergic looks at six designs.
Wall Stop: A lawsuit has been filed that "seeks to stop any work until the government agrees to analyze the impact of construction, noise, light and other changes to the landscape on rivers, plants and endangered species — including jaguars, Sonoran pronghorns and ocelots — and also on border residents." NYTimes
Screenshot from SDUT.
Wall Art: Salvador “Sal” Barajas was one of the original artists who painted murals in San Diego's Chicano Park. That was 1972. His new mural depicts migrant workers and comments on the planned border wall. Some say the message is unifying. Others are saying it's 'un-American." San Diego Union-Tribune.
Wall Street: At KSUT, art critic Jerry Saltz speaks up on the stare-down between Fearless Girl and Charging Bull. Fearless Girl is the sculpture an investment firm commissioned for International Women's Day. It faces Wall Street's famous Charging Bull by Arturo Di Modica. "The artist who made Charging Bull wants that girl gone. He says she diminishes his piece," reports KSUT. "And first of all, you said the sculptor Arturo Di Modica. I would not even call him an artist, frankly. I think of him more as, at best, a skilled craftsman with a totally cliched idea of what sculpture is." says Saltz . . . On Instagram, momtrends writes "I took the girls and reminded them that there are only 7 female CEOs running the top 100 companies, yet there are 17 men named John and 12 named David. We can do better. They can do better." More at The Guardian.
Forgotten Street Art Legend: Richard Hambleton anticipated the works of Banksy by more than a decade. "The unsigned figures were created under cover of darkness on buildings and bridges. They weren’t mere graffiti, but painterly works reminiscent of Jackson Pollock. Downtown residents buzzed about who could be behind them." Raquel Laneri writes on the hard life and comback of this street artist for the NY POST.
Rendering of one segment of "Ai Weiwei: Good Fences Make Good Neighbors". Courtesy of Ai Weiwei Studio.
Fences, not Walls: Through Public Art Fund, Ai Weiwei is planning "his most ambitious public art project to date. This fall, he will introduce 'Good Fences Make Good Neighbors,' a multi-site, multi-borough installation that explores the inclination towards, and effects of, erecting boundaries in society." ARTNET
WALLED OFF HOTEL: British artist Banksy opened the Walled Off Hotel near the West Bank wall and it is "now a quiet tourist destination in the city where Jesus Christ was born: a hotel, gallery, museum, bookstore and spray paint shop . . . "that is "part whimsy and spectacle. . .." reports the NYTIMES. Its booked through June.
Final Note: I Googled "Jesus," "Street Art," and "Easter." This is one image that popped up. Artist and location unknown.
Adolfo Gonzalez's “Octosteam" from Clark County "Centered"
From urbanista writer Alissa Walker: "Please overindulge on our latest project at Curbed, featuring Mimi Zeiger on starchitects, Ed Fuentes on public art, Patrick Sisson on sustainability, and yours truly on the housing crisis. Plus Strip-walking, bus-riding, and monorail-ing! Edited by Sara Polsky." It's all at CURBEDVEGAS.
For my contribution, a map with commentary, the public art entries are laid out to create a driving loop of Las Vegas, and includes works that have been overshadowed by recent art. My intro: "Greater Las Vegas grew thanks to highways, and those desert roads have shaped its public art aesthetic. Many artworks seem designed to be viewed from a moving car, and in fact the signage and neon along U.S. Route 91 and Fremont Street are a cornerstone of the city’s outdoor visuals." While one headline reads 'best' public art, my intent was really to give a robust introduction on what can be seen.
For the map, some photography by Chris Mueller, and some from the PtD archives.
IF YOU RECALL: Alissa Walker once did a series on Las Vegas for GIZMDO.
'Tilting The Basin' at 920 S. Commerce Street.
"Tilting the Basin: Contemporary Art of Nevada" runs through May 14. The exhibition reconciling north and south, urban and rural, and high art with low art is open on Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. On Fridays the exhibition is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. (920 S. Commerce Street / For more information call 702-201-4253).
For the record here are some of the reviews.
"Let’s teleport 'Tilting the Basin: Contemporary Art of Nevada' from Las Vegas to Manhattan. Better yet, clone the whole thing; put a copy in London, another in Sao Paolo, one in Shanghai. The international art world should know: Nevada is home to first-rate artists who can hold their own anywhere."
Baude, Dawn-Michelle. "'Tilting the Basin' unites the state's art scenes in a glorious show of strength." Las Vegas Weekly. March 22, 2017. lasvegasweekly.com
"Tilting" makes its Las Vegas debut in a partnership between the northern museum and the in-the-works Art Museum at Symphony Park, giving Southern Nevadans an opportunity to experience the aesthetic and intellect poured into starkly minimalist and tidy works and complex sculptures made from a lavish garden of divergent material. Textiles, photography and works on paper, glass and wood meet a large installation speaking to the idea of Las Vegas’ urban landscapes shifting and changing in hyperspeed, compared to the millennia it took for the area’s natural geography to form."
Peterson. Kristen "Tilting the Basin Gives Contemporary Art a Powerful Voice in Nevada" DTLV. March 15, 2017. dtlv.com
Las Vegas-based Brent Sommerhauser, one of the featured “Tilting the Basin” artists, characterizes the show as “more eclectic than it is cohesive.”
The “eclectic” description definitely fits Sommerhauser’s work, which includes blown glass (“The Well”), woodwork (“Bellmouth,” “Curl”) and drawings — made by forcing air into a chamber, where soft metal fragments leave their marks.
The title of Las Vegas-based Gig Depio’s painting “Bridge the Gap” reflects another “Tilting the Basin” goal: bridging the gap between Northern and Southern Nevada.
“ ‘Tilting the Basin’ is all about setting cliques and politics aside, and a merging of efforts between our two major art communities in Nevada,’ ” Depio says. “Because Nevada artists make do with little resources and recognition outside our local arts community … it is this very struggle that keeps us on our toes.”
Cling, Carol. "'Tilting the Basin' pop-up in downtown Las Vegas features art from artists across the state." Las Vegas Review-Journal. March 11, 2017. www.reviewjournal.com
[JoAnne Northrup of the Nevada Museum of Art] said artists in Northern and Southern Nevada have somewhat different styles that are informed by the environments they live and work in. “I would say a lot of Las Vegas artists’ work is informed by culture, whereas many of the Northern Nevada artists’ work is informed by nature,” Northrup said.
Wasser, Fred . ""Tilting The Basin" Art Show Now In Las Vegas." Nevada Public Radio. Accessed March 17, 2017. knpr.org
Seven Magic Mountains
PLEASE STAND BY
Paint this Desert
is on a brief
Serigraph Print on Rives BFK, 18"x12"
Edition of 50