LAKE LAS VEGAS 2010-2012

LAKE LAS VEGAS 2010-2012

Over the last 25 years Nevada was the fastest-growing state in the Nation, until the Great Recession of 2008 turned the tide on the urbanized Mojave Desert. Las Vegas was the third-fastest-growing U.S. metro area from 2000 to 2010, but now ranks 151st. The city continues to suffer the Nation’s highest rates of unemployment and housing foreclosure: properties have dropped an average of 57% in value since 2006.

20 miles East of the Strip lies an artificial 320-acre lake created by damming the Las Vegas Wash, which drains the city’s wastewater. The surrounding 3600 acres is known as “Lake Las Vegas Resort.” Comprised of 21 Mediterranean-themed communities, many of them “guard-gated,” three golf courses, a casino, two destination resort hotels, and a replica of Florence’s very own Ponte Vecchio, this Lake Como amidst the Henderson swamp began its life in 1991. By 2008, however, the entire 1600-home resort was in foreclosure as its primary developer, funded by the Bass Brothers of Texas, defaulted on $1 Billion in speculative debt from Swiss and foreign banks. All three golf courses went into foreclosure, and the hotels and casino followed shortly. In 2007 the average square- foot price of a resale home in Lake Las Vegas was $544; in November 2010 it was $106.

Vultures have moved in, and it’s likely that Las Vegas’ most excessive residential fantasy will eventually bounce back. Metaphorically, Lake Las Vegas actually means more than its clichéd theme-park lifestyle promises purport, and it might even mean more than the city of Las Vegas itself. It’s a poignant, lonely American archetype -- however awkward -- that embodies particularly American domestic dreams: classless classes, endless exuberance, Medici living for the everyday guy, and a castle on the cheap protected from the politics gathering just outside the gates. 

Hand-made book of 22 aerial images photographed by Michael Light from 2010 to 2012. Printed on Epson Enhanced Matte paper using archival Epson Ultrachrome 3 pigment inks, adhered with archival Gudy 831 double-sided pressure adhesive. Archival stability well exceeds c-print standards. Custom binding by John DeMerritt Bookbinding, Emeryville, CA. Edition of 10, signed on last image.

 

 

   01. 12-Mile-Long Channelized Las Vegas Wash, Looking Towards Downtown, Henderson, NV; 2011   
		
	
	 From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book; 35" x 44", ed. 10 

   24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5     

01. 12-Mile-Long Channelized Las Vegas Wash, Looking Towards Downtown, Henderson, NV; 2011

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book; 35" x 44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   02. Construction Road, “The Falls” at Lake Las Vegas, Downtown Las Vegas Beyond, Henderson, NV; 2011       From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book; 35"x44", ed. 10 

   24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

02. Construction Road, “The Falls” at Lake Las Vegas, Downtown Las Vegas Beyond, Henderson, NV; 2011 

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book; 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   03. Abandoned “Three Kids” Manganese Mine, Adjacent To Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2012   
		
	
	  From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

03. Abandoned “Three Kids” Manganese Mine, Adjacent To Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2012

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

   04. Future Cul-de-Sac and Abandoned Mattress, “The Falls” at Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

04. Future Cul-de-Sac and Abandoned Mattress, “The Falls” at Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   05. Construction Road for “The Falls” At Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

05. Construction Road for “The Falls” At Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   06. Lake Las Vegas Parkway Looking West, Gated “Bella Fiore” Development Beyond, Henderson, NV; 2011        From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

06. Lake Las Vegas Parkway Looking West, Gated “Bella Fiore” Development Beyond, Henderson, NV; 2011    

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   07. Halted “Bella Fiore” Houses and Bankrupt “Falls” Golf Course, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

07. Halted “Bella Fiore” Houses and Bankrupt “Falls” Golf Course, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   08. “Barcelona” Homes and Lake Mead Recreation Area, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011   
		
	
	  From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

08. “Barcelona” Homes and Lake Mead Recreation Area, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

   09. Former Northern River Mountains Looking North, “The Falls” at Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2012    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

09. Former Northern River Mountains Looking North, “The Falls” at Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2012

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   10. “Barcelona” Homes and the Edge of Lake Mead Recreation Area, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011     From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

10. “Barcelona” Homes and the Edge of Lake Mead Recreation Area, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011 

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   11. Empty Lots in the “Marseilles” Lake Las Vegas “Guard-Gated” Community, Henderson, NV; 2011    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

11. Empty Lots in the “Marseilles” Lake Las Vegas “Guard-Gated” Community, Henderson, NV; 2011

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   12. Terraforming “The Falls” at Lake Las Vegas, Northern River Mountains, Henderson, NV; 2011    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

12. Terraforming “The Falls” at Lake Las Vegas, Northern River Mountains, Henderson, NV; 2011

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   13. Edge of the “Barcelona” Gated Community, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

13. Edge of the “Barcelona” Gated Community, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5


   14. Future Homesites of “The Falls” at Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

14. Future Homesites of “The Falls” at Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   15. Gated “Monaco” Lake Las Vegas Homes, Bankrupt Ponte Vecchio Beyond, Henderson, NV; 2010    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

15. Gated “Monaco” Lake Las Vegas Homes, Bankrupt Ponte Vecchio Beyond, Henderson, NV; 2010

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   16. “Monaco” Lake Las Vegas Homes on Gated Grand Corniche Drive, Henderson, NV; 2010    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

16. “Monaco” Lake Las Vegas Homes on Gated Grand Corniche Drive, Henderson, NV; 2010

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   17. Gated “Tremezzo” Lake Las Vegas Sites and Bankrupt “Reflection Bay” Golf Course, Henderson, NV; 201    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5    
		
	
	  

17. Gated “Tremezzo” Lake Las Vegas Sites and Bankrupt “Reflection Bay” Golf Course, Henderson, NV; 201

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5


 
   18. “V At Lake Las Vegas” Pool Complex, “Via Visione” at Left, Henderson, NV; 2010   
		
	
	  From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

18. “V At Lake Las Vegas” Pool Complex, “Via Visione” at Left, Henderson, NV; 2010

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

   19. Thrust-Fault Mountains Near Rainbow Gardens, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5   

19. Thrust-Fault Mountains Near Rainbow Gardens, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

 

   20. “Casa Palermo” Lake Las Vegas Homes Looking Southwest, Henderson, NV; 2010    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

20. “Casa Palermo” Lake Las Vegas Homes Looking Southwest, Henderson, NV; 2010

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

   21. Lake Las Vegas and Empty “Marseilles Deux” Homesites looking Northeast, Henderson, NV; 2010    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

21. Lake Las Vegas and Empty “Marseilles Deux” Homesites looking Northeast, Henderson, NV; 2010

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

   22. Former Shoreline of Shrunken Lake Mead Looking Northwest, Near Echo Bay, NV; 2010    From   Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012  ; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10 

 24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5 
 40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

22. Former Shoreline of Shrunken Lake Mead Looking Northwest, Near Echo Bay, NV; 2010

From Lake Las Vegas, 2010-2012; artist's book, 35"x44", ed. 10

24" x 30" pigment print, ed. 5

40" x 50" pigment print, ed. 5

LAKE LAS VEGAS 2010-2012

LAKE LAS VEGAS 2010-2012

Over the last 25 years Nevada was the fastest-growing state in the Nation, until the Great Recession of 2008 turned the tide on the urbanized Mojave Desert. Las Vegas was the third-fastest-growing U.S. metro area from 2000 to 2010, but now ranks 151st. The city continues to suffer the Nation’s highest rates of unemployment and housing foreclosure: properties have dropped an average of 57% in value since 2006.

20 miles East of the Strip lies an artificial 320-acre lake created by damming the Las Vegas Wash, which drains the city’s wastewater. The surrounding 3600 acres is known as “Lake Las Vegas Resort.” Comprised of 21 Mediterranean-themed communities, many of them “guard-gated,” three golf courses, a casino, two destination resort hotels, and a replica of Florence’s very own Ponte Vecchio, this Lake Como amidst the Henderson swamp began its life in 1991. By 2008, however, the entire 1600-home resort was in foreclosure as its primary developer, funded by the Bass Brothers of Texas, defaulted on $1 Billion in speculative debt from Swiss and foreign banks. All three golf courses went into foreclosure, and the hotels and casino followed shortly. In 2007 the average square- foot price of a resale home in Lake Las Vegas was $544; in November 2010 it was $106.

Vultures have moved in, and it’s likely that Las Vegas’ most excessive residential fantasy will eventually bounce back. Metaphorically, Lake Las Vegas actually means more than its clichéd theme-park lifestyle promises purport, and it might even mean more than the city of Las Vegas itself. It’s a poignant, lonely American archetype -- however awkward -- that embodies particularly American domestic dreams: classless classes, endless exuberance, Medici living for the everyday guy, and a castle on the cheap protected from the politics gathering just outside the gates. 

Hand-made book of 22 aerial images photographed by Michael Light from 2010 to 2012. Printed on Epson Enhanced Matte paper using archival Epson Ultrachrome 3 pigment inks, adhered with archival Gudy 831 double-sided pressure adhesive. Archival stability well exceeds c-print standards. Custom binding by John DeMerritt Bookbinding, Emeryville, CA. Edition of 10, signed on last image.

 

 In exhibition  Hosfelt Gallery , San Francisco, 2012

In exhibition Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco, 2012