Art appreciation is a valuable skill for children to develop because it can promote creativity, critical thinking, self-expression, and self-esteem. Living in North Las Vegas means you’re close to many amazing places to view art, including galleries and special exhibits both indoors and outdoors. That’s why Crème de la Crème of Las Vegas brings you this list of awesome art installations around the area. 

The Life Is Beautiful Murals

A mural of art in North Las Vegas, NV

Downtown Las Vegas Wall Art” licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Flickr by Monkeystyle3000

Every September, you and your family can enjoy the Life Is Beautiful Music & Art Festival, which gathers some of the biggest names in music, fantastically talented artists of all sorts, and delicious foods. But once this three-day festival is gone, what’s left behind are some gorgeous murals and public art displays that you can visit over and over again without all the hustle and bustle from the festival.

You can walk (or drive) up and down Fremont Street and Ogden Avenue between North Sixth and North Seventh streets to view some of the most unique art you’ll see in the city. Enjoy life-like portraits, eye-catching illustrations, colorful abstractions, and many more interesting works by renowned international artists. Some pieces you must see include “Fear No Fate” by Tristan Eaton, a fabulous showgirl portrait, “The Cycle of Civilization” by Zio Ziegler (pictured above), and a robotic portrait called “The Meaning” by Pixel Pancho.

Monument to the Simulacrum

In 2007, the city of Las Vegas used this mountainous art piece to mark the site of the city’s centennial time capsule. Sculptor Stephen Hendee created the “Monument to the Simulacrum” to represent the fallibility of natural resources and honor the ideas of philosopher Jean Baudrillard who wrote about hyperreality and simulation. 

While these philosophical ideas may be a bit too lofty for young children, they can still admire and appreciate the majestic nature of this large, stainless steel sculpture in the shape of a mountain. What’s more is that the sculpture looks even better at night, lit up by the base lights that cast interesting shadows on the asymmetrical geometric shapes. You can find this amazing installation at 401 S. Fourth St. and dream of what it will be like when they move the mountain and open the time capsule in the year 2105. Talk about an exercise in imagination!

The Smith Center and Symphony Park

Head to The Smith Center, one of Las Vegas’ premier performing arts destinations, to view some amazing and diverse pieces of art. Inside the Smith Center, you can see a bronze pig statue as well as many colorfully abstract and realistic paintings. Catch these before you go see a show, or register for a public tour to view these pieces and the architectural highlights of the Center’s campus.

Head outside to Symphony Park to see “Pipe Dream” by artist Tim Bavington. This piece is made of tall pillars of differing heights and bright colors, making it both jaw-dropping to look at and perfect to take pictures with. The sculpture also represents the diversity of people who work with the center and participate in Las Vegas arts. You can improve your viewing experience by listening to the tune that actually inspired this amazing work of art. Listen to “Fanfare for the Common Man” by composer Aaron Copland while you admire this piece for a unique and unforgettable excursion.

Las Vegas Arts District

The Arts District of Las Vegas is full of galleries, monthly festivals, fantastic restaurants, and a lot of beautiful public art displays. There are many ways to enjoy art in this area. Spend a day or evening at a special event, art and music festival, or family-friendly activity and mark the occasion with a family photo near your favorite murals and sculptures. Take a self-guided tour around the district and see as many of these installations as you can. Or, have a meal at one of the many delicious restaurants and see the diverse art displayed inside.

You can walk the area and spot interesting graffiti and community-based murals, including the LGBT Mural at the intersection of South Third Street and East Imperial Avenue, which has been there since 2005. View the giant metal paintbrush sculptures at the intersection of East Charleston Boulevard and South Casino Center Boulevard. These two sculptures guide you into the arts district and paint a stroke of light 1,600 feet into the sky at night. Also, be sure to visit Art Square, the district’s hub, to see the outdoor art garden. 

Downtown Las Vegas

In addition to the murals left behind by the Life Is Beautiful Festival, downtown also houses other fantastic art installations that you have to check out. If you’re interested in the iconic neon signs of Las Vegas, then you’ll love doing a self-tour around downtown to find the historic signs restored by the Neon Museum’s public art project. 

Or, you can view other amazing public art pieces in Downtown Las Vegas, like a multi-story mermaid at 122 E. Clark Ave., a monochrome mandala at 330 S. Seventh St., a pop-art-inspired piece at 109 N. Ninth St., a purple mermaid at 108N S. Eighth St., a giant horned lizard portrait at 301 N. Sixth St., and a stunning, life-like portrait of a Las Vegas man at 236 N. Eighth St. Consider plotting a driving tour for a day trip around town to take pictures at your favorite art displays.

Now that you know where you can find some of the most photographic art installations around the North Las Vegas area, you can take your family out on the town to appreciate these pieces and get some great pictures, too. Plus, viewing these local pieces is a great way to inspire your little artist to create their own artwork and support the artists who worked so hard to bring their ideas to life. Did we miss any of your favorite spots to see public art around North Las Vegas? Let Crème de la Crème of Las Vegas know, and we’ll be sure to add it to our list.