Las Vegas is synonymous with bright lights, non-stop entertainment, gambling, and unbridled hedonism. Anyone who has ever had a wild time in this city of sin would attest to the truth behind the saying, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas”. Of all the things that Las Vegas is known for, modern art is not one of them. But where would art lovers get their fix when they visit this temple of excess?
There once was a Las Vegas Art Museum, but it sadly closed its doors in 2009. In its place, the Barrick Museum at the Las Vegas campus of the University of Nevada has stepped in to fill the gap left by this closure by changing its focus from natural history to art.
Obviously, there must at least be some art on display on the infamous Las Vegas Strip, and you can find some fine art on display at the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art. They were the pioneers of bringing art to the Strip back in 1998, and partnered with Boston’s Museum of Fine Art to bring classics to the gambling mecca.
For many people, the biggest reason for visiting Las Vegas is to see the bright lights and feel the action. They would love to visit the Neon Museum, where visitors can see a variety of discarded neon signs that date back all the way to the 1930s, when the city suddenly boomed into a major tourist destination.
As for modern art, there’s a very ambitious project by a bunch of modern art lovers to get a museum for contemporary art built in the Vegas Arts District. Named simply The Modern, this proposed art centre has been raising funds for several years now, and inch ever closer to becoming a reality. If this project manages to get off the ground, it would be a welcome cultural injection for this ephemeral city.