The Las Vegas Valley is a land of hidden treasures. Though most tourists come for the bright lights, the Nevada Preservation Foundation has made it its mission to hunt down and highlight striking midcentury modern buildings that are oft-ignored, even by locals. Through the power of Instagram and a passion for preservation, it was able to gather hundreds of options for a project that it has dubbed #UncommonVegas.
“It stems from a misunderstanding of modern architecture,” says Michelle Larime, the foundation’s deputy director of neighborhood stabilization, “and this idea that the recent past isn’t necessarily important. In the preservation field, the last decade has seen a real effort to help educate and advocate for why these buildings are relevant in our historic landscape.”
These three buildings are a fraction of the chosen 100 photographed by Kirsten Clarke for the project-culminating book Las Vegas: Uncommon Modern, which can be purchased at nevadapreservation.org. All were designed and built between the mid-1940s and the 1970s; some were known but underappreciated, while others were hiding in plain sight. Regardless, they’re all part of what Larime calls “the first and only mass effort to document what the Vegas midcentury modern architectural scene looks like on a great scale.”