New Art Debuts at Andaz Hotel


When the “Riot Hyatt” was renovated in 2009 and re-opened as its younger, hipper sibling, the Andaz, the hotel debuted with an impressive art program. Led by public art consultant and curator Merry Norris as part of the city’s percent for art program, the lobby has a rotating roster of mostly young, mostly local artists on display.

“No Name, Trash Feet” by Elisabeth Higgins O’Connor

On Tues, the hotel hosted a reception for the launch of its newest collection of pieces, featuring the work of Dion Johnson, Kristen Everberg, Danny First, Anne Collier, Jaime Scholnick, and Elisabeth Higgins O’Connor. Included in the celebration is the site specific installation of Jacob Hashimoto’s “Departure” – a sculpture that seems to be holding up well in the past two years despite its presence outside on the Strip.

“Black Heads” by Danny First

Merry’s taste for emerging talent translates into an eclectic, lively rotating roster of sculpture, painting and photography, all displayed in the hotel lobby. Flanking the east and west wall opposite the entrance are Dion Johnson’s colorful abstract paintings.

“Curve” by Dion Johnson

Before entering the kitchen/bar, visitors are still greeted by the oversized sculpture  “No Name, Trash Feet,” by Elisabeth Higgins O’Connor, made from blankets, knit Afghans, pillows, mattress covers, couch cushions, thread, twine, and string. The found domestic objects that comprise O’Connors’ work straddle the line between wryly amusing and somewhat grotesque. L.A.-based Danny First’s “Black Heads” are neo-primitive clay heads done in the artist’s own image.

The art is also available for sale, other than the site-specific works owned by the hotel. Prices for the pieces start at $850 for Jamie Scholnick’s small sculptures to $9,500 for Dion Johnson’s larger canvases.

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