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Saturday, March 26, 2005

Steve Wynn's Collection: An Online Review and Preview

Right now, there is no official "Steve Wynn's List of Art Only Steve Wynn Could Afford" website. So with that in mind, the following is an attempt to see what Mr. Wynn has owned in the past, and what may be on display when Wynn Las Vegas is planned to open in April 2005.

Sometimes Google searches are intensive, like panning for gold. Occasionally that effort is rewarded with a chunk of gold or two. Such is this nice nugget. The Art Rental and Licensing Agreement - Stephen A. Wynn and Wynn Resorts LLC comes courtesy of legal website FindLaw. This 2001 document offers a listing of artworks that were lent from Steve Wynn to Wynn Resorts. Isn't that like loaning to yourself? Stop questioning the needs of the super-rich and eat your ramen noodles.

The Wynn Collection as it was: (note the work by Andrew Warhol)

Paul Cezanne
Curtain, Jug and Fruit Bowl
(Rideau, Cruchon et Compotier)
c. 1893-94
Oil on canvas
23 1/2 * 28 3/4 inches

Paul Gauguin
The Bathers
(Promenade au bord de la mer)
(Famille Tahitlenne)
Oil on canvas
36 1/4 * 28 3/4 in. (92 cm. * 73 cm.)

Edouard Manet
Portrait of Mademoiselle Suzette Lemaire, In Profile (Portrait de Mademoiselle Suzette Lemaire, de profil)
Pastel on paper
21 3/8 * 17 3/4 in. (54.3 * 45.1 cm.)

Henri Matisse
La Robe Persane
Oil on canvas
32 * 25 5/8 in. (81 * 65 cm.)

Henri Matisse
Pineapple and Anemones
Oil on canvas
28 3/4 * 361/4 in. (73 * 92 cm.)

Amedeo Modigliani
Nu Couche (sur le cote gauche)
Oil on canvas
35 * 57 in. (88.9 * 144.8 cm)

Pablo Picasso
La Reve
Oil on canvas
51 1/8 * 38 1/8 in. (129.8 * 97.2 cm)

Vincent van Gogh
Peasant Woman against a Background of Wheat
Portrait of a Peasant Girl in a Straw Hat
June 1890
Oil on canvas
36 1/4 * 28 3/4 in. (92 * 73 cm.)

Andrew Warhol
Steve Wynn (three consisting of gold, white, red)
Synthetic polymer paint, silkscreen ink
and diamond dust on canvas

Claude Monet
Camille a l'Ombrelle Verte
Oil on Canvas
31 7/8 * 23 5/8 in.

Strangely enough, another list appeared in an August 6, 2004 SEC filing, which included an "Amended and Restated Art Rental and Licensing Agreement". This third version of this arrangement, according to Yahoo! Finance, was entered into on November 7, 2002. But Amedeo Modigliani's "Nu Couche (Sur la Cote Gauche)" was sold by Wynn at Christie's on November 4, 2003 for $26,887,500. Why is it still on the list? Ask the lawyers.

Most of these works were on display at the Wynn Collection gallery, in the old Desert Inn. The Art Gallery was mentioned in March of 2004, when Wynn Resort filed a Form 10-K (definition). This document (downloadable PDF or online version) talks of the financial benefits of displaying very expensive pieces of artwork.

"Offsetting the decrease in aircraft revenues are increases in revenues from the art gallery and the retail shop of approximately $38,000 and $75,000, respectively, due to increased patronage."

This Annual Report 2003 (filed in 2004) details the yearly income of the gallery.


Art gallery

2001 - $35,000
2002 - $279,000
2003 - $317,000

Period from April 21, 2000 (Inception) to Year Ended December 31, 2003 - $631,000."

After the closing of the gallery and the demolition of the remaining D.I. buildings, the collection had no home, which is why it is up at the Nevada Museum of Art in Reno. The exhibition of the Wynn Collection, which was originally slated to run until March 30th, has been extended until April 10th. The Reno Gazette's Masterpiece Milestone reports on this exhibition and offers this list of works as ones on display.

* Pablo Picasso's "La Reve," 1932.

* Vincent van Gogh's "Peasant Woman Against a Background of Wheat," 1890.

* Pierre-Auguste Renoir's " Among the Roses” (Madame Leon Clapisson)," 1882.

* Claude Monet's "Camille a l'Ombrelle Verte," 1876.

* Henri Matisse"s "La Robe Persane "The Persian Robe," 1940.

* Paul Gauguin's "The Bathers," 1902.

* Rembrandt van Rijn's "Self Portrait with Shaded Eyes," 1634.

* John Singer Sargent's "Robert Louis Stevenson and His Wife," 1885.

* Pablo Picasso's "Nature morte aux tulips,," 1932.

* Pablo Picasso's "Hommeau chapeau," 1965.

* Andy Warhol's portrait of Steve Wynn in red, white and gold, 1983.

* Jan Brueghel the Elder's "untitled landscape," 1594.

* Camille Pissarro's "Hermitage Garden, Maison Rouge," 1877.

* Jean-Michel Basquiat's "Napoleonic Stereotype circa '44," 1983.

While all the legal papers are great fun, let's get to the most bizarre nugget of gold. Way back when, a lot of this art was on display at Wynn's crown jewel, The Bellagio Hotel & Casino. They were part of the prestige of the Bellagio and had a specialized gallery for their exhibition. The Bellagio's website at the time had a page dedicated to the gallery and listed the works available for viewing. So you would think that since it's been years since that was the arrangement, the site would be taken offline, never to be seen again. Well, you are wrong and you should give thanks to the "ANTI-CAPITALIST OPERATING SYSTEM (ACOS) v2.0." For whatever reason, online anarchists have preserved a satirical version of the Bellagio Art Gallery in the Bellagio Casino website. . .

"By clicking on the link below to enter the Bellagio Art Gallery, I signify my understanding that what I am about to see is a satire of the web site of the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art in the Bellagio Casino, Las Vegas. I also signify my understanding that this satire of the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art contains sexual content that may be offensive to some viewers.



So, there you go! When it opens, the hotel will be awe-inspiring, the gallery glorious, and the art will look great.

posted by Mr. Kimberly at


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