Las Vegas Artists Paint The Town With Collaboration and Celebration
Arts are on the march in Las Vegas. At least that’s what promoters of weekend art events say.
UNLV Art Walk organizers are preparing for 3,000 people on Friday, and a mural festival takes over the Commercial Center for the weekend.
Cheering those efforts on are Nancy Uscher, dean of the UNLV College of Fine Arts and the driving force behind Art Walk, and Nancy Good, owner of CORE Contemporary, an art gallery in the New Orleans Square portion of Commercial Center.
Both see signs that Las Vegas is becoming more of an art town.
“I think it is a very arts-loving community," Nancy Uscher said, "And I think we have so much to build on right now. There’s much going on. We have a whole downtown burgeoning art scene. The university is a real nexus of creativity,”
Uscher said there is more collaboration and cross-pollination across disciplines at UNLV. That collaboration will be on display Friday during the Art Walk.
“The idea is for people to embrace as much as they can that evening. It goes on for four hours. We have about 40 events. I think that the impression that a participant will come away with is – wow!” she said.
Good, who is featured in the current issue of Desert Companion magazine, says more galleries are locating outside the official Arts District along Charleston Boulevard because demand there has sent rents higher.
“Gentrification is real in the Arts District,” Good says.
But wherever the galleries are located, Good believes they're a sign of how Las Vegas has changed when it comes to artists.
“I love how excited our community is about the expansions that are happening. We are taking on a new look – so to speak – as far as what an arts and culture community can be in a city that has not necessarily focused its attention as a whole on that arts and culture community,” she said.
Uscher points to growing enrollment at the College of Fine Arts and increased traffic at the university’s Barrick Museum of Art as evidence of the community’s greater appreciation of the arts.
■ The UNLV Art Walk goes from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday and is being held at several spots on campus. The event and parking are free and families are invited.
■ Mural Fest 2019 takes place starting Friday at New Orleans Square and continues through the weekend. It’s free and open to the public.
Nancy Uscher, dean, UNLV College of Fine Arts; Nancy Good, owner, Core Contemporary Gallery