Creative Global Network for the Visual Arts

The Las Vegas Art District Expands with its first international event


Place might sound like a simple space, but it's no mainstream art gallery.

By Marly Miller 

Main Street welcomes a newcomer to the Las Vegas art scene, a studio and gallery called Place. But one thing that visitors certainly won't find at Place is typical
mainstream art. The gallery offers a variety of art, from lowbrow, also known
as street culture art or pop surrealism, to high-end 
color:black"">and recently an international exhibition featuring the artists of
the World Art Foundation.

The gallery got its name from owner Joe Frcho, who initially called it "Place" when he bought the building with plans to
come up with something different down the road. After thoughts of turning the
space into a nightclub, he opted for an art gallery. Place grew into its name,
as it's the quintessential place for inspiration, creativity and quality art. 

Each month allows a new artist to be featured on the gallery walls. Place Curator Gina Quaranto is currently gearing up to feature high-end interior design-friendly art next
month. "The gallery is already booked well into 2011," says Gina, who
has big plans for its future. 

Within the 6,500 square feet of space at Place, there are six studios where artists rent their own work space. Before taking on the larger-than-life role of curator, Gina was
an artist herself, creating mixed media and surreal art then selling it in the
Las Vegas art district. "I opened up a comic book store when I was
19," says Gina, who also spent time as a comic book illustrator and
tracer. Despite being busy with the success of the new gallery, she still finds
time to create art in her spare time.

“I am very excited about the World Art Foundation and their world class artists from over 40 countries. The international diversity of the exhibition gives Place a new outlook for the future” says Gina

What's also important to Gina and to Place is giving to the community through regular benefit events. The most recent was for the Red Cross and offered attendees the
opportunity to bid on the art in progress in an auction. Another benefit called
Artist Aid gave to Catholic charities. "The gallery collected coats and
hats donated by artists for the homeless of Las Vegas," says Gina.
"If artists can give to charity, then certainly anyone can!" 

So what's in store for the future of Place? Gina plans to showcase new artists, host group shows and add more events, in addition to a gallery revamp coming up in October
for the Halloween season. October also marks the anniversary of First Friday, a
festival-like experience held on the first Friday of every month in downtown
Las Vegas. 

On each spirited First Friday, the streets transform into a cultural scene, offering artists, bands and even fire breathers the chance to express their appreciation for art.
The galleries and shops draw a diverse crowd while children turn the sidewalk
into a canvas with chalk drawings and decorations. 

Since First Friday made its debut in October of 2002, it has continued to grow and draw more and more people, making it a first-rate arts event. In fact, First Friday
has put downtown Las Vegas on the map as a well-founded art district. And
thanks to the new growth and celebration of the art community in Las Vegas,
galleries such as Place have the opportunity to appreciate and honor art

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