A fluorescent Stonehenge has found a home outside of Las Vegas.

Five years in the making, “Seven Magic Mountains” is the $3.5 million work of Ugo Rondinone, an artist known for playful, meditative rock sculptures. He is fast becoming one of the most talked about names in land art - a movement and genre based on the manipulation of land.

This particular work - Rondinone's first commissioned public work - is inspired by natural Southwest "hoodoo" formations.

It's about “thresholds and crossings, of balanced marvels and excessive colors, of casting and gathering and the contrary air between the desert and the city lights,” according to the artist, who now lives in New York.

Located at the far southern end of Las Vegas Boulevard along Interstate 15, the roadside eye candy includes seven 30- to 35-foot tall stacks of giant, jagged limestone chunks. Each is dipped in a paint palette of its own Day-Glo hue, from Victoria’s Secret pink to construction cone orange and Titanic sapphire.

The site of the project is not a coincidence.

The site is only a short distance from Jean Dry Lake, where land art masterminds Jean Tinguely and Michael Heizer created some of the earliest, most influential "Earthwork interventions" in the 1960s. Unlike their work, however, Rondinone's work beckons attention rather than blending into the landscape.

On May 11, the rainbow block towers will be officially open to the public. The piece will be on view for two years.

“When you walk among them, you feel like you’re having this quasi-spiritual experience. You also feel like you’re part of a performance,” said David Walker, executive director of the Nevada Museum of Art.

The Reno-based museum paired with the New York-based Art Production Fund, a public art nonprofit, to commission and produce “Seven Magic Mountains.”

"It’s like moths to light. Regardless of what you know about art, you can't help but approach these pieces with a big smile," Walker said.


What: "Seven Magic Mountains" by Ugo Rondinone

Where: Far southern end of Las Vegas Boulevard along Interstate 15, off the "Seven Magic Mountains" exit.

When: May 2016 to May 2018

Info: NevadaArt.org and sevenmagicmountains.com