In October of last year, I had the chance to visit Las Vegas, Nevada and while I may have lost playing the slots, I won in finding street art. Now you will not find any cool tags when scuttling to and from different casinos (as least I didn’t find any). I assume I assume this is because the Vegas Strip, unlike other cities, is mostly privately owned which means that they can clean up on a more constant basis whereas somewhere like New York City has a lot of government and public owned spaces.
I wanted to go find some street art, which naturally led me to the arts district and it was there that I was able to see tags and murals that showcase the personality of the local Las Vegas community, rather than the flashy casino’s on the tourist side of town.
One mural that really struck me was dedicated to the victims of the shooting in 2017 which resulted in the loss of 58 innocent lives. Before going to Las Vegas, I had watched the documentary series “11 Minutes”, about this tragic event. Seeing that mural still up, not tagged over, five years later reminded me of the pain, that horrific event caused that this community still holds.
On a more positive note, I was drawn to murals of birds, in particular ones of eye-catching flamingos which I found quite a few of. While most likely the artists’ intent was referencing the Flamingo casino hotel and bar, for me it was reminder of the artificiality that makes up the good and ugly of Las Vegas. Neon lights gambling, flamingos living in a casino in the desert, lost hopes, and also that fantastic manmade product of spray paint that creates beautiful art on what can be harsh reality.
Words can only say so much – so check out the photos below and be sure to visit Vegas yourself to see the full spectrum of beautiful street art the city has.
Check out more photos in the gallery carousel below!