A series from a little quest:
On the way out of Marfa—there's only one way out when you're traveling west—I revisited the Prada Marfa store before dawn.
The store is not actually in Marfa. It’s about 35 miles northwest from Marfa and three miles further on from a little near-ghost town called Valentine. You can get your Valentine’s Day cards and letters postmarked in Valentine, Texas, if you plan ahead. As far as I could tell it was the only industry in the place—that and a couple of churches to serve the needs of those few present and those who are invisible—there is a cemetery after all.
(If you click on an image it should take you to the upload on Flickr, where you'll find a GPS link that will put the location on a GoogleMap if you want to see where this is.)
The art installation is the main reason why I took a leisurely southern route on the way to visit some OS friends in Scottsdale. I've long wanted to photograph it, though I know many, many have before me. It won't last forever, I'm glad I had this chance.
I timed it just right, by luck I think, and was able to catch it with the inside lights still on. I was really excited. I stayed from when it was still quite dark til after the sun rose above the mountains in the east.
I have some other shots taken two days earlier at sunset...I'll get those uploaded too. I’ve been constrained a bit while on the road with some slow internets.
About the artists from Wikipedia: "Michael Elmgreen (born 1961; Copenhagen, Denmark) and Ingar Dragset (born 1968; Trondheim, Norway). Elmgreen and Dragset are a world-renowned collaborative artist couple who live and work together in Berlin, Germany. They are known for work which has wit and subversive humour, and which looks at serious cultural concerns."
The store was built in 2005. There is no entrance to the store, the front door is inoperable. There are video cameras in the store and outside to discourage vandals. There’s a farmhouse about a mile away—other than that it’s just high mountain farmland, pastures for cattle and goats and endless views of scrub and the surrounding mountains in this part of west Texas.
Dedicated to my friend Deven, who likes these shots.
And because the graffiti is a stain on this wonderful piece of art, I scrubbed it off...in photoshop. Graffiti can be a contribution to art, as witnessed in an example of another post I put up about celebrating vivid colors, that context is the Cadillac Ranch outside of Amarillo. But I think the Prada Marfa store should stand on it’s own without any help from other artists.
all images copyright © 2009 by barry b. doyle • all rights reserved
Update—added an image below of one of the sunset shots from two days prior to these other images. Yes, that’s Freaky’s cousin Pinky in my back pocket. She was going ape for the Prada—it’s in the family.