Have you heard of Marfa? It popped on my radar a few years ago, after reading an article about Food Shark, a 1974 delivery truck known as one of Marfa’s best restaurants, always parked at the farmer’s market four afternoons a week. Marfa recently rolled back into my mind’s eye when a guy I was dating raved about the Texas town’s contemporary art and landscape. Better late than never to share a piece of artistry with you.
Artist Donald Judd began the Marfa art movement. His minimalist art was created and installed on a scale that mirrors the immense body of land. The Chinati Foundation is a local contemporary art museum based upon the ideas of Judd, its founder. As Judd wrote in the foundation’s catalogue: It takes a great deal of time and thought to install work carefully. This should not always be thrown away. Most art is fragile and some should be placed and never moved again. Somewhere a portion of contemporary art has to exist as an example of what the art and its context were meant to be. Somewhere, just as the platinum-iridium meter guarantees the tape measure, a strict measure must exist for the art of this time and place.
Prada Marfa is a permanently installed sculpture by Elmgreen and Dragset, Berlin artists who call the work a “pop architectural land art project.”
Another must-visit is Ballroom Marfa, an art gallery devoted to contemporary culture, including music and performance arts. The community is rich in history, especially recognizable for its Marfa Lights. Located off of Highway 90, the observation area allows for an enigmatic glimpse of a long-standing phenomenon. Magical moments, off the beaten path traditions and art make Marfa a worthy stop on the road of life.