Marfa, TX

Art oasis in a desert town: Marfa, Texas

dreamcatcher_mahdi

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Modern Art in Marfa, Texashttps://www.instagram.com/dreamcatcher_mahdi/

The first line about Marfa that caught my eye was ‘tough to get to; tougher to explain. But once you get there, you get it’. And this is so true. It’s hard to explain about this desert town. You have to go there to understand what is so special about this town. Marfa is more than a desert town and completely different than any other tourist city. The only thing I can say about this town is that you are not going to find a similar one. It’s an art oasis, full of creativity and fresh environment. Imagine art, culture and creativity mixed and combined in the high desert of the Trans-Pecos in far West Texas and present you something very refreshing- yes, that is Marfa.

In early 1880s, the city was founded as one of the many water-stops for the people along the Southern Pacific Railroad. During World War II, the town was used as a U.S. Army base. Since then, the population increased with time and somehow became balanced during the late twentieth century. Today with only 1800 people residing, Marfa is one of the lively towns of West Texas where you can get some fresh environment like no other city in Texas. This is more like an art world station of Texas, perched on the high plains of the Chihuahua desert. Creative people such as artists, architects, musicians, sculptors, filmmaker, and the people who appreciate art come to visit this place just to enjoy and busk in the slow pace of life. As a result, today Marfa is a popular tourist destination in Texas. They call it minimalist arts mecca and its quite likely to find galleries, outdoor installations, restaurants, bars in the streets of Marfa. But if you are looking for a tourist town full of light, crazy expensive shop, this is not your place. Marfa is more than a place, it’s an experience you will never forget.

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Modern Art In Marfa, Texashttps://www.instagram.com/dreamcatcher_mahdi/

I went to Marfa for a wedding photography assignment. Honestly, I did not know much about the city. When we were searching for some unique locations, we were blown away by the simplicity and uniqueness of Marfa. The peaceful desert surrounded by the Texas mountains, stunning scenery, the beautiful sunset glow and most importantly the nice little town full of art - everything made my stay very pleasant. This was a genuine surprise and a bonus for me. I had one full day to explore the town and I am glad that I had time. Otherwise, it would be a great miss. The whole city is full of one-of-a-kind things. In fact, the Airbnb we were staying was unique. It’s like you are staying there and experiencing art at the same time. Marfa is also famous for its night sky. Due to low light pollution, Marfa has one of the darkest night skies in USA. The relative remoteness and vast landscape have made it an ideal place to watch the big bright stars.

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Chinati Foundation, Marfa, Texashttps://www.instagram.com/dreamcatcher_mahdi/

One of the famous things to visit here in Marfa is Artist Donald Judd’s Chinati Foundation. Around 1940’s Donald Judd first traveled to the Trans-Pecos region. He was a construction foreman in the Army Corps of Engineers. That time (around 1946), he wrote in a telegram to his mother ‘beautiful country and mountains’ about Marfa. Fast forward 30 years later, Judd became one of the renowned New York artists who was well known for his three-dimensional works. But he wanted to get away from the chaos of downtown Manhattan and was in search for a quiet serene place that would be the home for his sculptures. He returned to West Texas in 1974 and decided to purchase an old army barracks near Marfa’s main highway. He named it after the mountains ‘Chinati’. Chinati foundation is one of the main attractions of Marfa where Donals Judd’s works are in the display along with the works from several other artists namely John Chamberlain and Dan Flavin. It is an amazing experience to see all these large scale indoor and outdoor installations. Not only that, but also the foundation offers nonprofit arts education and programming.

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The famouse Prada Store, Texashttps://www.instagram.com/dreamcatcher_mahdi/

Another famous social media worthy spot in Marfa is the Prada Marfa store. Though this is not an actual store, still this art installation is one of the most photographed spots in Marfa. People also love to check out Ballroom Marfa, which showcases modern art along with performance art. You should also visit Ayn Foundation which exhibits famous works by Andy Warhol and other renowned artists. Marfa is full of places like the Pizza Foundation, the Mafia Book Company, the homestead from the film Giant, etc. that you should consider checking out. Art spaces and museums in Marfa celebrates minimalism is such a unique way that will dare you to think, think about the piece you in front of you. It represents art from a different perspective that will let you think more intuitively. This type of art never tells you what you should think about it rather it will tell you to think from your own perspective which is really liberating. You can plan to visit the art festivals that held throughout the year in Marfa. Like I said before, Marfa is a one-of-a-kind experience that you should consider having at least once in a lifetime. If you are an art enthusiast like me, you may need more than one visit to explore and think more.

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Beautiful Marfa, Texashttps://www.instagram.com/dreamcatcher_mahdi/

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I am a Civil Engineer by profession, a photographer by passion. Though currently I am residing in Louisiana, but the definition of home to me is quite different. I am originally from Bangladesh, a very small beautiful Asian country where I finished my bachelor’s degree and came to USA for higher studies. During my PhD year whenever I can, I used to travel. But one thing that changed my whole travel experience and how I see the world is taking pictures. Photography is a more powerful tool than one can imagine. hen you become a photographer, you see things that are not seen by others, you long to see places that may require a very long walk. Hiking, Camping became a part of travel plan since then and I appreciate more about life and nature now. I would like to share my experience and my vision with everyone in the form of a blog. I love what I do and really love to think that my work will bring joy and smile for others too. I think every picture tells a story. We just need to explore to find out the real story behind any picture. I will post the travel blogs where me, along with my wife will be sharing our travel stories, how we manage to travel cheap and how to cope with different things while traveling. We want to keep it simple because I know a thousand of people want to do the same thing but don’t know how. The main idea is to keep an open mind while traveling and accept whatever comes on the way.

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