In the Cosmopolitan’s P3Studio, artist JK Russ creates a hybrid world of fashion and desert life awash in sensual imagery. A Joshua tree’s budding flower cluster is made even more erotic when rendered in collaged lips in shades of red and purple. Eyes with thick lashes form its pointed and sword-like leaves. And then there’s the earth and sky, a cut-and-pasted horizon made piecemeal across the window. The visitor-made/artist-directed rocky desert plane is populated by leggy and feathered bird women, chic and defiant on the harsh landscape.
House of Paper Birds continues the bird-woman motif that ruled Russ’ exhibit last summer at Sin City Gallery, connecting fashion, sexuality and Las Vegas. Here visitors collaborate, co-creating the works alongside the artist, adding to and taking away from the baskets of paper smiles on the worktable and pasting bits of earth and sky onto the window. The piece becomes a reflection of the heels and decorative styles adorning Cosmo visitors dressed for the Las Vegas nightlife scene.
Inside, it’s a workshop of sorts piled with fashion magazines to be pillaged. Discarded cutout pages accumulate on the floor of the neighboring sitting room, created for Russ’ artist residency and featuring a small exhibit of her works, otherworldly compositions perfect for the desert fantasy that is Las Vegas.
House of Paper Birds Through January 4, Wednesday-Sunday, 6-11 p.m. P3Studio, 702-698-7000. Closing reception January 2, 5-7 p.m.