Life Is Beautiful announces its art projects

More than 35 artists from around the world — and around Las Vegas — will converge on downtown Las Vegas to create works during October’s second annual Life Is Beautiful Festival.

From large-scale murals and installments to interactive and immersive galleries, “the art program is as integral to the overall festival experience as any other aspect at Life is Beautiful,” stated festival founder Rehan Choudhry in a news release. “Our goal is to change individual’s everyday relationship with art by inspiring creativity and challenging perspectives, especially amongst those who normally wouldn’t consider themselves art enthusiasts.”

Building on last year’s mural program — some of which remain on the walls of downtown buildings — the festival’s street art program will return, drawing some of the biggest names on the international street art scene.

Contributing artists include Britain’s D*Face, who participated in last year’s inaugural Life Is Beautiful, along with Borondo, originally from Spain but now based in London; the U.S.-based collective CYRCLE; Brooklyn-based Japanese artist Misaki Kawai; Canada’s Li – Hill; Australia’s Fintan Magee; Ireland’s Maser; Belgium’s ROA; and Italy’s Edoardo Tresoldi.

In addition to the street art program, this festival’s fine art program will expand into the Western Hotel for gallery installations centering on love, equality and family.

Patrick Duffy, president of the Las Vegas Art Museum and chairman of UNLV’s Fine Art Galleries, returns to curate the transformed space, to feature installments and collaborations from a number of arts including Audrey Barcio, Camilla Quinn, Eric Tillinghast, Gina Quaranto, Jerry M Misko II, Jesse Smigel, Jevijoe Vitug, JKRuss and Trifecta Gallery.

Works by students from the Las Vegas Academy, Linda Alterwitz, Matthew Couper, Miguel Rodriquez, VAST Space Projects, Zak Ostrowski and Aaron Sheppard also will be part of the gallery program.

And an original mural design will bring together Tim Bavington, known for his brightly colored Symphony Park sculpture outside The Smith Center for the Performing Arts, and contemporary Japanese artist Sush Machida, whose work can be seen throughout Las Vegas.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity that Life is Beautiful can help bring together artists from a multitude of different backgrounds ranging from students at the Las Vegas Academy to some of the most recognized names in the country,” Duffy stated. “It’s our hope that through these works and collaborations we can leave our attendees slightly changed from the experience and to impress upon them that life really is beautiful.”

The downtown festival, which attracted more than 60,000 patrons in 2013, celebrates music and food as well as art Oct. 24 through 26; more information is available at

Contact reporter Carol Cling at or 702-383-0272.

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