Artist Graham Knuttel Develops Neonopolis Wall Mural with Art Students

LV Academy of the Arts students meet Graham KnuttelIrish Painter Graham Plans Giant Art Panels With 13 Handpicked Las Vegas Academy of the Arts Students

Photography by Jackie Brett

Worldwide acclaimed Irish artist and leading figurative painter Graham Knuttel met with his new collaborators, 13 handpicked promising art students from the Las Vegas Academy of the Arts, to brainstorm and outline plans for two huge art panel murals for the east facing wall on the Las Vegas Boulevard-side of Neonopolis.

Neonopolis Wall for Graham Knuttel - Art Students MuralThe highly visible murals will be 9 foot x 27 foot and mounted close to the top of the building. Knuttel pointed out that Las Vegans will see the work all the time and tourists once or twice so it should be relevant to Las Vegas and encompass connectivity with the environment. Together Knuttel and the students settled on a mobsters theme as a starting point.

Las Vegas Academy of the Arts department chair Kelly Mabel said they will take the Las Vegas’ past history encompassing landscape, architecture and a possible showgirl and move up to what is relevant in the students’ culture today.

“I thought he would take more control,” said one student who was sketching away as the group shared ideas, “And he’s letting us have our ideas.”

LV Academy of the Arts students with Graham KnuttelWhile some of the students have worked together before this is the first time the whole group has been assembled. The challenge will be transferring and combining their different art techniques and developing their artistic vision together.  While the students will be influenced by Knuttel and his famous art style, it will be the students generating the drawings.

The students are participating in the creation of the mural from the creative process through the painting and installation, which is yet to be determined but could be as soon as this April.

Knuttel is new to the Las Vegas scene, having recently opened a gallery exclusively featuring his work at the Venetian-Palazzo Resort. The gallery will celebrate its grand opening Saturday with a ribbon-cutting by Dr. Miriam and Sheldon G. Adelson.

Graham Knuttel’s paintings and sculptures have been acquired by an array of celebrities, including Frank Sinatra, Sylvester Stallone, Whoopi Goldberg, Colin Firth, Michael Stipe, and Viscount Linley, the nephew of Queen Elizabeth. Director John Herzfeld commissioned Knuttel to paint Robert De Niro. Several prestigious institutions such as Goldman Sachs and the William Morris Agency have also counted Knuttel canvases among their displayed art.

The gallery is curated by Knuttel Worldwide Ventures, a partnership between the artist and Las Vegas-based Redhills Ventures.

For more information about the Knuttel Gallery, call 702-228-8808 or visit

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