Wall and Piece

It’s tough to pass up valet parking in Las Vegas, given the convenience. But now the trendsetters at the Cosmopolitan have made the dreary old alternative—self-parking—a bit more inviting.

As part of the installation known as WALLWORKS on various floors within the parking garage, four street artists—Shepard Fairey, Retna, Kenny Scharf and Shinique Smith—were invited to create large-scale public works of art that represent a range of both graffiti and fine-art practices. All employ different styles of mural-making, from spray paint to plastering, and their work spans panels of concrete clustered most closely to the north and south elevator banks on the second, third, fourth and fifth floors.

New York’s Art Production Fund brought this stellar group to Las Vegas to create something that hadn’t been done before in a large-scale commercial development. The true standout in the collective is Los Angeles artist Retna, whose striking urban hieroglyphics are an homage to his tagging forefathers—their names deftly transformed into a pronounced script. Retna’s work is on the third floor and encompasses 11 panels.

Beyond the parking structure, the Cosmopolitan and the APF have also collaborated on PAUSE, a multimedia installation on the resort’s digital marquee that has featured art powerhouses including Jennifer Steincamp, Lee Villareal, T.J. Wilcox and Yoko Ono.

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