Entries in mid century modern (3)

Preservation Spotlight: Heidi Swank, preservationist

I first met Heidi about eight years ago when we were both involved in the early days of the Atomic Age Alliance, an organization dedicated to Mid-Century Modern Las Vegas.  She and her husband were both passionate about Mid-Century Modern architecture and wanted to learn more about Las Vegas' role in that history.

She and her husband, Scott, have a MCM home in the historic Beverly Green neighborhood that they have lovingly restored. They live in a 1956 Cinderella ranch designed by Hugh Taylor for Rose and Louis Molasky the parents of Irwin Molasky. They co-founded the popular Flamingo Club- a roving, invitation-only neighborhood mixer whose motto is “Building community one cocktail party at a time."

She is dedicated to the worthy idea that our classic homes are worth saving. While Las Vegas experienced tremendous growth in the final decades of the 20th century and early 21st century, its original neighborhoods offer a look back at not only how the city grew but through its architecture offers insight to those years before the explosion boom and what was important to the residents who owned those homes.


Beverly Green neighborhood  Photo courtesy of Las Vegas CityLife

In addition to be elected to the Nevada State Assembly for District 16, she is also the Exective Director of the Nevada Preservation Foundation.

The NPF is a "non-profit that provides historic designation and grant support to neighborhoods, homeowners, and business owners who reside in a historic area or own a historic building. The Foundation supplies much needed support to navigate the extensive process of obtaining local, state, or federal historic designations. Once designated the Foundation also provides grant-writing support and functions as a clearinghouse for grants benefiting historic districts/homes. As more of our state’s architectural past ages into eligibility for historic designation, it is important for the stability of our communities that we work to maintain our history."

Despite her very busy schedule, we were able to interview her for this series.

CLV Blog:  How did you become interested in preserving Southern Nevada history?

 Swank: As an anthropologist by training, I have long been interested in the ways in which our past makes us who we are today. In particular, I'm interested in how our built environment and the ways in which space is used in these homes reflects and impacts how we see them, how we use them, and how we understand ourselves.

 One of the more interesting things about Southern Nevada history is that there isn't a lot of time depth. Many people discount the area because of this saying we don't have any history. However, because our history is relatively new it is in many ways more interesting.

We don't have hundreds of years of

Read more at ClassicLasVegasBlog.com

Preservation Spotlight: Joel Rosales, photographer


Today we shine our Preservation Spotlight on Joel Rosales. While you may not know Joel's name, chances are you are familiar with his photographs. For over ten years now, Joel has been documenting the changing landscape of Las Vegas and the surrounding Valley. From hotel demolitions to neon signage to historic neighborhoods, Joel has been photographing it.

Another native son, Joel has a keen interest in our history and our past. Through his original website, LeavingLV.net and now LostandFoundVegas.com, Joel has been sharing his photographs, memorabilia and photo collections with the world. 

I met Joel back around 2005-2006 when I began hosting panel discussions at the Nevada State Museum and have been a big fan of his work ever since. His dedication to documenting our history often means he is up before dawn heading to yet another location that will become a place that isn't there anymore but will live on in his photographs.

Joel was more than happy to answer a few questions and share his thoughts on the City, its history and his passion for preserving it.

CLV Blog:  How did you become interested in Las Vegas history?

 Rosales: Having been born and raised here I never really understood what Las Vegas really was to the world.  As I watched movies and read books that are much older than I am, I began to realize what a unique and storied history we have right here in my very own home town and began seeking out the places I'd seen and read about.  When the realization came that most of these places are long gone, I began delve much deeper into their stories and made myself


Read more of the interview at ClassicLasVegasBlog.com