While the fine art gallery at the Bellagio Casino and Hotel has been largely successful, this has not been the case for all the Las Vegas venues which have tried to attract visitors by displaying fine art. It seems as though the combination tends to be either a hit or a miss, with museums such as Venetian’s Guggenheim’s Hermitage Museum which didn’t generate enough traffic to keep its doors open, and the Wynn was replaced by a Rolex shop in 2009.
In general, the tourists who visit Las Vegas don’t come to the City of Sin see art, but for the entertainment. However, a niche market exists of appreciators, such as Borgata guests, who are spending upwards of $200 a night; and they want cultural enrichment as well. When Wynn experimented and opened a fine art gallery and failed, he decided his approach needed to be altered. So pieces from his private collection are now scattered among all his commercial properties, another reason why his establishments are renowned for bringing in high caliber casino guests.
David Guidera is a young emerging artist whose work you will find on display at the Las Vegas Wynn Convention Centre, in the corridor. The pieces there are entitled Mercury Ascending Azo and Attempting to Calm a Titan. Valet guests get to feast their eyes on Stephan Weiss bronze horse and shoe sculptures. The Terrace Point Café entrance contains a wooden chandelier made by Gustav Eiffel (of the Eiffel Tower), and alongside the café stands English artist Tim Bavington’s Full Fathom Five. Viola Frey’s ornate ceramic sculpture, the centre piece in the foyer at the Terrace Pointe Café, is Wynn’s personal favourite.
Many Las Vegas casinos opt not to rely on dry art pieces, but are geared at providing exhibitions like museums, by renting out space to operators or vendors, or presenting controversial or trending exhibitions such as original Titanic artifacts.