So my brother, who is more badass than any artist ever, is on a cross-country bike ride and recently alerted me to the existence of Marfa, Texas and specifically the Prada store located there…in a poor, once-ranching town of about 2,000 people . [Insert hysterical laugh/scream here].
A little research on my part later revealed that the ‘store’ is actually an art installation piece. [Laugh/screaming continues]. I don’t have basic adult responsibilities so I decided to dive into the story of this town, its confusing existence and the deep well of hatred it creates in my heart.
portrait of a badass as a young man
So anyway, this town of Marfa, Texas apparently used to be a ranching town that, in its death throes, was descended upon by a few New York liberals with artistic ambition and money. These east coast vultures picked at the bones of the carcass town, then built them into a sculpture reminiscent of Georgia O’Keeffe’s early work, give or take a vagina. This was in the 1970s. All the art installations acted as a beacon for other people who have a lot of money and presumably no job skills and since then the small town has bloomed into the Disney World of art destinations. By which I mean it’s a place where the locals have jobs as dishwashers and landscapers, the school system provides an education on par with the ‘it’s a small world’ ride and the economy is based entirely on people who use inane expressions like ‘escaping the hustle and bustle’ and ‘non fat latte.’
Back to the Prada store. Yeah. So one of the attractions to this place is a Prada store that isn’t a Prada store. It’s just an adobe building with Prada items inside but no working door, no customer service agent and no point. When I first thought this was a real Prada store, I was surprised by the absurdity and downright insulting nature of putting a high fashion store where it’s obviously not necessary. The fact that it’s even less functional made the concept even harder to grasp. The ostensible ‘point’ behind it is worse yet. Since the building is made from adobe it’s mean tot decay with time. The artists even said that graffiti would add to its artistic integrity.
The place was broken into a robbed within 3 days. Ranchers:1 Art:0
“We loved this proposal for many reasons,” Ms. Villareal said. “We loved the idea of the piece being born on Oct. 1 and that it will never again be maintained. If someone spray-paints graffiti or a cowboy decides to use it as target practice or maybe a mouse or a muskrat makes a home in it, 50 years from now it will be a ruin that is a reflection of the time it was made.”
It’s funny because proponents of this place pretend that they’re all ‘it’s art, whatever happens happens.’ But in reality, they have this preconceived idea of what decay should look like. As in: an emotional reaction to the art itself, whether positive or negative. But after a bunch of shit got stolen, they replaced the shoes and bags (which I would think qualifies as ‘maintenance’) because that was a decay motivated more likely by financial need or even greed, but certainly not art.
Basically, fuck them for attempting to anticipate and congratulate themselves on the reaction a fucking faux Prada store in the desert would receive.
arts on arts on arts
Here’s a conversation I am one hundred percent positive occurred:
“Guys, won’t it be great when there are like bullet holes and Banksy’s all over this art to signify the tension between identity and self?”
“Totally, best eighty thousand dollars anyone has ever spent.”
“Art is so transcendent everyone. Okay, enough talking. Back to fellating each other while alphabetically listing things that make us superior to people who have jobs.”
Even more condescending is this gem of an article over at the Daily Cougar. “This $80,000 building is a sincere project by its artists and by art foundations to promote fashion even in areas where fashion may seem like a thing of the future.”
One can only hope that some day all those poor, loser locals in Marfa will stop being so lazy and start earning enough money to be self involved assholes. Just like the people who showed up uninvited and proceeded to impose their ideas and values on the locals living there. This is America’s greatest and longest running tradition, after all.
not sayin, just sayin,