During their portrait session our Austin hosts, Jeany and Mose, randomly mentioned that their family was making a trip to Marfa, TX.
“Marfa?” we asked.
“Marfa,” they nodded.
“What in the heck is Marfa?” my brain continued, intrigued.
Side Note: As artists, I always feel a little apologetic when a conversation exposes us as being totally not in the know but, it's been a lifetime since we have been “those kind of artists” so…
With zero point of reference, I eagerly listened as they explained that there is a world-class arts mecca hidden deep inside a ghost town close-ish to the deserty border of Texas and Mexico, hours from anywhere.
Um, yeah. Take thee to Marfa.
Population 2,020, Marfa’s current claim to fame is courtesy of artist Donald Judd who descended on the town in the 70s. His home, studio and several famous works of art can be found there along with several galleries and funky shops that were (mostly) closed when we arrived. Check out Artsy for a great overview of Judd including images of his work.
Fortunately, we were able to catch the expertly named Food Shark. Our third falafel since NOLA, it destroyed them all. Food SHARK.
We tooled around town snapping shots of faded facades, plants we wish would grow in our yard and Hotel Paisano — where the movie “Giant” was filmed. (Shout out to my mom for resembling Elizabeth Taylor as a young girl and falling madly in love with Rock Hudson, knowing not that he preferred boys.) Also of note, it is where James Dean shot his last film.
Sadly, we didn’t have time to stay for a Judd tour or a trip to El Cosmico if we wanted to catch sunset over the Organ Mountains in Las Cruces, NM. Instead, we agreed to place a mental bookmark in Marfa promising to return, someday soon, to buy this bag and maybe even this necklace and hang out for weeks in a tepee.
Maybe we’ll go see the ghostly “Marfa Lights” or maybe we won’t but, come what may, we’ll go back my friends.
Get thee to Marfa.