Western Region ACSA Conference
Let me dwell for a moment on the fabulous aspects of the city and its environs. The word ‘fabulous’ derives from the Latin fabula which gives us the English ‘fable’, a short narrative that provides an edifying or cautionary point. Fables can be pedagogical instruments. When Denise Scott-Brown, Robert Venturi, the late Steven Izenour et al took a first—second—look in 1968, they insisted in their formal analysis of the Las Vegas strip to postpone judgment, i.e. they proposed to view the space through a dispassionate lense, assembling analytic maps while resisting the temptation to judge the Strip based on an arbitrary set of values. However, this is 2001 and in acknowledging the impossibility to occupy a neutral position, I would like to counter the Learning from Las Vegas project by investigating in this paper the lines of contestation that run between and across the different scales that circumscribe the phenomenon of Las Vegas today.
Muecke, Mikesch, "Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas: Contestations from Gambling to Water Rights" (2001). Architecture Conference Proceedings and Presentations. 24.