enculturating las vegas into the next millennium... art, dance, film, music, poetry, theater, history, nature and everything else that enriches the lives of those who live and visit southern nevada... Since 2003...

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Sacred Spaces / Forbidden Places... The Temples of Luxor... A photographic exploration...

There was a time several millennia ago when mere commoners would lose there lives if they gazed upon the ancient Gods and thier temples. Those ancients would slave under the harshest conditions, work under enormous pressure to complete monumental architecture that would define a civilization beyond imagination. The ancient Egyptians created feats of monumentality that defy explanation to this day. We have all seen the documentaries, read the books, magazines and heard the experts, all who can barely attempt to explain how these innovative peoples were able to create such scaled grandiosity with the simplest of technologies.

Over the last several years I have observed my good friend Cameron Grant scale the mountains of Las Vegas to take amazing images of this valley. I witnessed his passion for an art form that captures moments in time that remind us of where we came from and possibly where we are going. Through the eye of a lens Cameron has captured images of places that we can only dream of. Rather then stay at home in the comfort and security of his own valley Cameron decided to do something a little off the beaten path and take images of another valley, a valley of kings. In December (2009) he spent two weeks among the Gods, Goddesses and Pharaohs of ancient Egypt to capture images of the City of Luxor and the Temples of Karnak.

A few months ago Cameron asked me if I would take a look at a small collection of the thousands of images he took, to assist him curatorially on an exhibition of his trek to the land of Tutankhamen. I of course could not resist even though ancient Egypt was not my forte'. After spending a week looking over the images I imagined myself going on the Grand Tour, visiting all the exotic places of the Mediterranean on a ship in the middle of the 19th Century. I even wondered what Napoleon thought to himself as he conquered Egypt and used it's treasures to fill his trophy case in Paris. Luckily all that Cameron brought back was a little bit of sand and a lot of amazing images. The collection consists of several areas of interest and span several thousand years of Egyptian history, from the old Kingdom through the conquest of Egypt by Alexander the Great. Architecture is the main theme of the collection with a smattering of anthropomorphic figures that set the tone for the exhibition.

Through the use of an HDR (high dynamic range) camera, Cameron has been able to capture these ancient temples in ways that we could only experience if we stood next to the structures themselves. The images are vibrant and the history behind these temples comes alive before our eyes. Of the thousands of images that are part of this collection only a select few have been chosen to be exhibited. This coming Thursday and Friday Cameron will present his collection to Las Vegas in a limited engagement. The collection will be on exhibition at the Box Office Gallery in 18b (Las Vegas' Arts District). The gallery has been completely transformed just for this show making it a must see destination during the arts festivities this week.

The Box Office Gallery
1129 Casino Center Boulevard

Preview Thursday (May 3) from 5 to 9pm
First Friday (May 4) from 6 to 10pm. 

For more information and to see more images please visit Sacred Space/ Forbidden Places - The Temples of Luxor 

For the video please visit this site http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qcxjU6SvB4

Man, know thyself... and thou shalt know the gods...

The Box Office Before

The Box Office After

Brian Paco Alvarez enculturating Las Vegas into the millennium...

posted by Brian Paco Alvarez, Curator and Chronicler of Culture at


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