Settlers and Nomads is a collaborative work in progress that serves as a point of access to a network of contemporary artists, thinkers and projects with ties to Las Vegas, Nevada. The “Settlers” live and work in Las Vegas, while the “Nomads” have roots elsewhere. Most of the nomads are friends and colleagues who lived in Vegas at an earlier point and time, while others were just stopping through. All have glitter and dust on their boots and have been influenced or inspired in some way by this unique place we call home or pit stop, drawn to Las Vegas’ visual and cultural history and context and the surrounding southwestern landscape, Dave Hickey’s “the bottom of the sky.” In addition to linking to artists’ websites or blogs, the site also serves as a shout out to contemporary art spaces, projects and other cultural destinations and websites we’re fond of or involved with. We offer curated studio visits and welcome collaborations with other artists and organizations. Subscribe to our monthly newsletter sharing writing, images, exhibition and event listings here.
Publisher WENDY KVECK is an artist, educator and curator who has lived and worked in Las Vegas for sixteen years. Please share inquiries, links, news, or Las Vegas art history with firstname.lastname@example.org.
AUDREY BARCIO is an interdisciplinary artist working with the questions surrounding the human condition. Her work has been published in “New American Paintings,” and her public art installation “Continual Eventual” was recently on view at the Clark County Government Center Rotunda Gallery in Las Vegas. She is currently an MFA candidate in Studio Art at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (Spring 2016) and will soon be relocating to Chicago to start a new life adventure.
MARK BRANDVIK has been featured in solo and group exhibitions throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe including the recent ‘Top Ten Now’ Los Angeles, ‘Volume Control’ at VAST Space Projects, ‘5,4,3,2,1’ at P3 Studio Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas and the upcoming ‘Contemporary Nevada: State of the State’ at the Nevada Museum of Art in Reno. Included in New American Paintings, recognized in Las Vegas Weekly as Best of 2014 for Narrative Sculpture, and the recipient of several grants, commissions, and residencies, Mark Brandvik’s work is found in many private, public, and corporate collections. In addition to his art practice, Brandvik has taught art at the college level since 1997 at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and the College of Southern Nevada. The artist lives and maintains a studio in downtown Las Vegas.
MARC DOMBROSKY is an artist, educator and curator. Solo exhibitions have been held at Portland Art Museum, Portland, OR; Clark County Government Center, Las Vegas, NV and Platform Gallery, Seattle, WA. His work has been included in group exhibitions at Cranbrook Art Museum, Bloomfield Hills, MI; Craft Alliance, St. Louis, MO; Bellevue Arts Museum, Bellevue, WA; Gregg Museum of Art and Design, Raleigh, NC; and Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma, WA. He is currently Chair of the Department of Visual & Performing Arts and Gallery Director at Southwestern Michigan College in Dowagiac, MI. His work is represented by Platform Gallery in Seattle.
ANDREANA DONAHUE is an interdisciplinary artist from Chicago; she’s a graduate of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s BFA program and also studied Advanced Painting at Temple University (Rome, Italy). Donahue has organized and shown work in group and solo exhibitions in Chicago, California, Nevada, and Alaska. Her project-based practice engages a wide range of media, but always reflects an ongoing investigation of simulacra and the use of elaborate processes to transform humble materials. Her site-specific installations highlight connections between outwardly unrelated narratives and disciplines, creating a hybrid lexicon. Heavily informed by location, her objects reference vanishing regional traditions while transmitting a sense of superstition, loss, and longing. Donahue is the recipient of numerous grants and awards, including a 2015 Puffin Foundation Grant, 2015 Harnisch Foundation Grant, and 2014 Vermont Studio Center Artist Grant/Residency.
JUSTIN FAVELA is a Las Vegas native working in the mediums of painting, sculpture, and performance. He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Studio Arts from UNLV. He has participated in exhibitions across the United States. Las Vegas venues include the Contemporary Arts Center, Trifecta Gallery and The Clark County Government Center. His work draws from art history, popular culture and his heritage. Mr. Favela has curated many shows throughout southern Nevada, from UNLV’s Marjorie Barrick Museum to El Porvenir Mini-Market in North Las Vegas. When Justin is not in the studio, he is probably watching TV on the Internet. Justin is the poster-with-the-moster, curating and managing the Settlers + Nomads Instagram page.
DANIEL HABEGGER was born in 1958 in Basel Switzerland. He lived and worked in Berlin 1984-94 and in New York 1983, 1994-96, where he was awarded an artist residency fellowship from MOMA P.S.1 1994-95. He has lived and worked in Las Vegas, Nevada since 1996.
LAURA NAPIER is an artist and independent curator living and working in Houston, Texas. Her work explores behavior, sociology, and place through documentation, installation, and participatory and collaborative performance.
EMMANUEL ORTEGA is a Curator and a Doctoral Candidate in Ibero-America colonial art history from the University of New Mexico. He also is an Adjunct Instructor at the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Nevada Las Vegas. Since 2007 he has investigated images of violence in the Novohispanic context. For his master’s thesis Ortega investigated images involving autos-de-fe organized by the Novohispanic inquisition. For his Ph.D. dissertation Ortega researches visual representations of the New Mexico Pueblo peoples in Novohispanic Franciscan martyr paintings. He has contributed several entries for the Khan Academy website and the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies online bulletin. He has presented his work in the XXXVI Annual Colloquium of Art History organized by the Universidad Autonoma de Mexico, 2012, the College of Art Association and American Studies Association in 2015. Also, in 2015, Ortega partnered with the Museo de Arte Religioso Ex-Convento de Santa Mónica in Puebla México to curate two art exhibitions based on recently restored paintings from their permanent collection.
KRISTEN PETERSON is an award-winning writer living in Las Vegas, Nevada, covering art in Las Vegas for more than 15 years at the Las Vegas Sun and Las Vegas Weekly while freelancing for publications such as Desert Companion, Vegas magazine and The Guardian.
JK RUSS is a New Zealand-born artist and curator who relocated to Las Vegas in 2010. Based downtown, she enjoys being walking distance from galleries, cafes and live performance venues and is often seen with camera in hand, documenting local arts events.
AARON SHEPPARD lives and works in Joshua Tree, CA. He has gallery representation at Western Project in Los Angeles where he will be exhibiting in a two-person show with Carol Caroompas this October 2016. He is currently collaborating with artist Joe Baker on a performance piece to debut in New York City’s Washington Square this October. He will also exhibit new performance and audio works created in collaboration with artists Johanna Wagner and Karolina Sulich at Projekt Raum – Pool in Karlsruhe, Germany this August. Link to his e-book “Midway” here.
D.K. SOLE is an artist who picks up objects. Then she uses wire to fasten the objects together in small configurations. Afterwards she attaches these things to the wall, where they hang in a sort of galaxy or universe. Standing back she considers the ways in which space can be delineated. It is strange that there is a such a thing as space at all. Why should it exist? She has never stopped being surprised every time she thinks about it. To be able to pick up rubbish with her hands and move it through the air is astonishing. In Australia she studied at Deakin University and the Victorian College of the Arts but in neither instance was she involved in the field of Fine Arts. Currently she lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, where she co-manages a downtown gallery named Satellite Contemporary and works at the Marjorie Barrick Museum.
ERIN STELLMON is a multi-disciplinary artist from Oregon who lived in Las Vegas for more than a decade. Her community-focused practice explores local manifestations of transience, memory and reinvention. In mixed-media collage work she frequently emphasizes the visual fragmentation of her compositions in order to highlight the cycles of destruction and reinvention that she perceives are endemic to the Las Vegas municipality’s civic culture. She now lives and works in Baltimore, Maryland.
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