Speaking to Las Vegas…

"Mistress X - Downtown Las Vegas, 2009" Lauren McCubbin, 2009

"Mistress X - Downtown Las Vegas, 2009" Laurenn McCubbin, 2009

Laurenn McCubbin, a professional graphic artist and MFA student at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, is developing an ambitious performance and gallery show entitled Speaking to Las Vegas in the Language of Las Vegas. The gallery show is scheduled to open in February 2010. Click here for more details.

Laurenn describes the project as follows: “This is going to be an art installation that combines sculptural elements, performance, audio, video, photo documentation, and illustrated portraits of Las Vegas sex workers. The purpose of this show is to investigate the connections between the Las Vegas economy & the legal & illegal sex work that happens there.” Among other things, Laurenn’s project will entail creating her own “hooker cards”–those full color escort service cards that men pass out on the Strip–directing interested parties to a phone number and website which Laurenn is creating beforehand. Thanks to Gary Tognetti for bringing this show to my attention. It’s a shame I’ll be back in Atlanta at that time, because I would have loved to see it.

I have a question for all you Vegas natives: when did “hooker cards” first make their appearance on the Strip? In the Seventies I remember seeing the newspaper dispensers with free black-and-white tabloids advertising escort services, but I don’t recall the cards. Those must have started in the Eighties or Nineties.


About James Steffen

I'm currently the Film Studies and Media Librarian at Emory University in Atlanta. Although my primary passion and expertise is in film, I also love literature, music and other arts.
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