Brush the Heat

Natalie Delgado, Doglion, IE, Ian Racoma, & Lance L. Smith
November 6 - December 12, 2020

November 6 - December 12, 2020

Opening Reception:
First Friday, November 6th, 12-10 PM

When tourists think of Las Vegas, an indulgent oasis of concrete and technology often comes to mind. However, the artists in this show, all local to Vegas, offer personal connections to the surrounding landscape and how it has formed their view of the massive Mojave Desert which surrounds Vegas. Nevada, with over 80% devoted to public land, contains diverse climates and ecologies ranging across deserts, mountains, forests, and cities. It has notably been the location for extreme examples – such as atom bomb testing - of human environmental effects as well. These artists and other Nevada natives, including the original ones, have absorbed and explored much of this landscape.


With the exhibit “Brush the Heat,” these five Las Vegas-based artists explore the flora and fauna of Nevada through various media, presenting the colors and textures of the desert along with human and figurative elements to reveal the connection between humanity and nature in this specific setting. Drawing on historical techniques that often seem neglected, given the dominance of digital media in contemporary art, “Brush the Heat” aims to expose the natural and often exotic beauty that surrounds us every day in Nevada.


This group has grown together through a commitment to art in our city, and this show accumulated through an interest in exploring the varied experience each artist has had here, developing a sense of place. Natalie Delgado places her subjects in isolated or ambiguous surroundings with the intent of projecting a sense of loneliness, uncertainty, and foreboding, all of which underscore similar themes found in nature. Doglion’s work is often inspired by lost technology, as he attempts to combine digital and physical mediums. IE’s abstract and predominantly geometric work reflects his life experiences as well as his current understanding of himself and his surroundings. Ian Racoma’s subject matter tends to be observations of human behavior through realism and/or metaphors. Lance L. Smith uses drawing, painting, and performance to highlight the profound reality of marginalized experiences.


Collectively these artists present a rich and compelling portrait of Nevada – and especially of Las Vegas nestled amid mountain vistas – to both newcomers and tourists. Their work also enriches the understanding of those of us who have been lucky enough to put our roots down long enough to begin to understand it.