The 705 Erogenous Zone Las Vegas, NV 2017 2,000+ sqft mural (Video) Dr. Laura Henkel, Sin City Gallery (curation) Alison Chambers, The 705 (building) "Downtown" Steve Franklin, The 705 (building) Brian "Paco" Alvarez, Zappos (materials donation) Aaron Sheppard has a complex. Well, a few of them. But on this warm and breezy mid-May day, while he is in the beginning stages of his latest mural, The 705 Erogenous Zone, the artist was worried about putting his suggest- ive work on three very public walls in a low-income, Latino and black community in the Cultural Corridor. “Sometimes I feel like I don’t have the authority to place this imagery in public,” he says. “Fuck, here comes another white boy coming to change what little we got left.”
Sheppard, a painter, sculptor and performer originally from Nebraska who received his MFA at UNLV, is now liv- ing in a small desert home in Joshua Tree where he says he lives in his “artist bubble.” Shook by the president- ial election, Sheppard began to question the validity of his political and social opinions as a white male. He says people regularly comment on his height, or assume he’s in a band, a presumption that pales in comparison to being judged by race. “I don’t feel so secure in my place to address such things. And that’s something that I have to figure out,” he says.
And while the mural on 705 N. Las Vegas Blvd. wasn’t used as a soapbox, the imagery in this particular loca- tion makes a statement on its own. His work often refer- ences Franz von Bayros, the Austrian illustrator whose work depicts the white bourgeois class in decadent, sexual scenarios from a voyeuristic hetero male per- spective. Read More, Aaron Sheppard