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What’s with the giant turkey at the Container Park?

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Turkey at Alios
Photo: Bill Hughes

When you combine the sci-fi movie Mysterious Island with a high-end architectural lighting store and artist Justin Favela, there’s bound to be a giant cooked turkey in the makings. Not just an exaggerated turkey, but one closer in size to a Smart Car than a kitchen oven, garnished with papier-mâché vegetables and then placed on an equally enormous plate.

Such is the well-lit bird in the window of Alios at the new Container Park. The sculpture—made of cotton sheets, dipped in glue, painted brown and lit from above by an elegant chandelier made of silverware—is one of several works created by Favela to define areas of a home, or in this case, a 500-square-foot urban loft.

“There is this push to live smaller and live Downtown that we keep hearing about, so we picked lighting fixtures that would be beautiful in a 500-square-foot space,” says Alios owner Todd VonBastiaans, an art collector whose company’s Main Street location has doubled as a gallery for exhibits.

VonBastiaans’ collaboration with artists at the Container Park is designed to showcase art and sophisticated lighting. That Favela was the first to be featured should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with the artist’s full-size 1964 lowrider Impala piñata made for a group show or his crude cardboard-and-glue appropriations of CityCenter’s art collection for a 2012 solo exhibit. A fan of Claes Oldenburg, Favela also created a version of the artist's “The Store” at his uncle’s market, a performance installation he titled “The Mini Mart.”

But it’s his papier-mâché turkey currently grabbing all the attention. It came as a request by VonBastiaans, who was inspired by the giant chicken from Mysterious Island. It serves to reference a dining area. Favela’s cardboard urinal, attached to the wall next to a Philips Living Shapes interactive lighted mirror, serves as a nod to Marcel Duchamp’s “Fountain,” while representing the bathroom area. Cardboard Bert and Ernie beds flank an eco-friendly Cerno LED-lit wall lamp with an extending arm.

In the “living area” VonBastiaans uses an iPad to change the hue of the LED lights above the Favela-fabricated Simpsons couch—a continuation of the TV and movie theme. As for Duchamp’s “Fountain,” Favela points to the artwork’s pop-culture crossover and ability to hold its own.

Furnishings by Favela Through January 14, Sunday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-11 p.m., Alios, Container Park, 478-9636. Artist reception December 19, 6-9 p.m.

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Kristen Peterson

Kristen Peterson joined the Las Vegas Sun in 1998 as a general assignment reporter. In 2003, she turned her focus ...

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