I’m pleased to announce that the next phase of development at the Neon Museum is underway. We’re calling it Neon2020. The centerpiece involves the acquisition of the abandoned Reed Whipple Cultural Center which sits directly across Las Vegas Blvd. from the Neon Boneyard. The 32,000 square foot facility will give us our long-awaited indoor gallery, storage space for our ever-growing collection of vintage Las Vegas signs as well as space for classrooms and future administrative offices. This addition doubles the size of our presence on Las Vegas Boulevard. Significant remodeling will commence this summer with phase one completion slated for the first quarter of 2020. The building will be renamed Ne10. Why? It’s pretty simple. Neon is a chemical element with the symbol Ne and the atomic number 10.
Another component of Neon2020 involves the expansion of our current boneyard. Since ground space is at a premium, we’ve decided to build up rather than out. We will begin construction shortly on the unique addition of a large grid. Approximately 30 feet high, the grid will allow us to add more signs to our outdoor collection by suspending them above the ground. Signs from the Las Vegas Club, the Barbary Coast and Binion’s will be just some of the classic designs slated to be hung.
I would like to personally thank The City of Las Vegas which continues to be a strategic partner in the Museum’s continued development. In addition to a long term lease, the City is also giving us a grant of $2.2 million to help in Reed Whipple’s much-needed rehabilitation. And of course we are always grateful to our members and supporters who have helped make the Neon Museum, the Crown Jewel of Las Vegas!
New ‘Gallery Talks’ a hit with visitors
This year we began offering 15-minute themed “Gallery Talks” included with daytime general admission tickets. The first two, “History Highlights” and “Pop Culture” have been well received by guests. Here’s what some said about their Gallery Talks:
“Enjoyed the history of the signs in a way that was not too overwhelming and longwinded.”
“The pop culture talk was a wonderful surprise that helped put some of these mammoth signs into context. It was a nice spin on what could have been an uninformed visit.”
“The Pop Culture talk added so much to our experience. I’m not a huge history or performer buff but seeing the collection through pop culture added such a new dimension that I really was able to appreciate the collection that much more!”
Neon Museum’s Brilliant! artist Craig Winslow shines at ‘Believer Festival’
Artist Craig Winslow, creator of the Brilliant! projection mapping experience at the Museum, produced the opening night installation for the 2019 Believer Festival. A showcase for writers, artists and musicians, the festival opening night, held in the Neon Museum’s Ne10 Studio, featured poetry, art and readings.
A large-scale projection installation incorporated animation of Believer Festival imagery with the Museum’s historic signage. Winslow also worked in collaboration with writer José Orduña to bring a curated selection of faded, iconic signs back to life, creating a visual and literary story-telling experience for festival attendees.
The three-day Believer Festival is named for a bimonthly magazine of literature, arts and culture published by the Beverly Rogers, Carol C. Harter Black Mountain Institute at UNLV.
Author to detail how culture affects typography in Las Vegas
Join the Neon Museum and Nikki Villagomez, author and nationally recognized speaker on typography June 11 for a look into how local culture affects typography and decision-making processes in daily life. Nikki will use pictures taken throughout her travels to discuss the comparisons (and contrasts) in type choices based on location.
She will be speaking at 7 p.m. in the Ne10 Studio, 1001 W. Bonanza Rd., on the Las Vegas Review-Journal campus.
Her presentation will incorporate photos submitted by you of your favorite Las Vegas typography.
Nikki also will have copies of her book "Culture+Typography: How Culture Affects Typography" to purchase and will sign copies.
A graduate of Louisiana State University with a bachelor’s degree in fine arts. Nikki worked as a designer in New York City before returning home to South Carolina where she is the creative studio director for a top 20 public accounting firm.
Free admission. Register here.
Julie Henson: Neon Museum’s 2019 National Artist in Residence
The Neon Museum is proud to announce the selection of Julie Henson as our 2019 National Artist in Residence. Henson was selected from a highly competitive field of 82 applicants and will be joining the Museum for eight weeks this summer.
Her proposal includes plans to create a series of works based on the signage, graphic design and advertising from the collection of the Neon Museum and around Las Vegas. Her residency will also feature opportunities for public engagement, beginning with an Artist Talk & Community Mixer at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 11, at The Lucy, 600 E. Bonneville Ave., Las Vegas.
Quacking and Flames: sign updates
The Ugly Duckling sign has flown back to the collection after its restoration. The Ugly Duckling sign dates to the 1990s and was a part of the roadside pylon for the Ugly Duckling Car Sales company.
The Flame Restaurant sign has been installed in the Boneyard and is one of 19 restored signs that lights up at night. This sign originally perched on top of the restaurant, which was open from 1961 to 1993. This sign also was part of the Neon Museum’s exhibit on Fremont Street from the late 1990s until 2013, so we are excited to have it back on display.
The museum has acquired two signs from the recent Binion’s remodel project downtown that were likely installed in 2004 when the property was remodeled from Binion’s Horseshoe to Binion’s. These signs would have been on the corner of Fremont and Third Street where our “H Wall” sign from the Horseshoe would have been before.
Hot Yoga returns this Summer
Join us for an hour of hot yoga under the Neon Boneyard outdoor canopy with certified instructor Eileen Lorraine. Although under our patio, expect temperatures to be in the 100s so please bring plenty of water, yoga mat, towel and any additional yoga equipment you may need. Please note, the Neon Museum does not provide yoga mats.
This program is restricted to adults 18+ or children 16 and over accompanied by a guardian. Waivers will be issued prior to the beginning of class.
Admission is $18 per session. Neon Museum members receive $8 off. Mark your calendars for these Hot Yoga dates: Wednesdays, 7-8 p.m. June 12, June 26, July 10, July 24, August 7 and August 21.
Father’s Day Paver Appeal
October 12, 2019
Acclaimed film director, producer, artist, writer and animator Tim Burton will be honored with the Neon Museum’s prestigious Glow Award at the Boneyard Ball.
More details to follow.
Annual Fund Appeal
Thank You for Helping Us Grow the Glow!
Recently visit the Neon Museum and want to get a perspective on who supports us? Please click here for a list of generous individuals and businesses that have supported the Neon Museum with their financial and in-kind gifts in the last 12 months.