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Desert Companion

Saving Signs, in Her Own Way

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Davy's Locker
Mikayla Whitmore

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Davy's Locker

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Holiday Motel
Mikayla Whitmore

Holiday Motel

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Fun City
Mikayla Whitmore

Fun City

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Acmall
Mikayla Whitmore

Acmall

“Nothing is sacred in this city,” says artist and photographer Mikayla Whitmore. Certainly not winsome artifacts of the past, in this case classic signage: “It seems in the last few years — or maybe I am just old enough to pay attention now — that signs are being removed to be updated or switching hands.” Plenty of artists have photographed classic Vegas neon, but with her dioramas of lost and imperiled signs — excerpts from a series — Vegas native Whitmore moves beyond a simple documentary function, investing them with a deep affection but also an air of fragility, of charm but also melancholy and transience. Like people, their minute imperfections bestow personality. “I hope to honor and create a sense of awareness to preserve these pieces of history,” she says.

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