Thursday, March 24, 2011


I was so thrilled when my husband spotted, on, an image of a Prada store in Marfa, Texas (the home of Donald Judd's museum, The Chinati Foundation).  The image was in a section about odd roadside attractions in the US.  I knew immediately it must be installtion art.  There is NOTHING in Marfa other than the Judd museum.  And there is NOTHING close by.  Not even remotely close by.  This just had to be art.  So I had to look it up. 

And yes, I was in fact correct...Prada had not declared Marfa the new up-and-coming hip getaway of the rich and famous worthy of a store.  The artistic team of Elmgreen and Dragset (Danish and Norwegian respectively) had created the store as permanently installed sculpture in 2005.  They call it a pop architectural land art project.  Very fitting, I must say. 

Interesting tid bits about the piece include:
- its cost at $80,000 (despite the fact it is constructed mainly of adobe brick and mdf)
- its door is nonfunctional
- the stock inside the store includes 14 right foot Prada shoes and six handbags without bottoms
- the building will never be maintained, and the artists plan to let it decay over time  (however, they were not willing to let it go three days after it was completed when a group of (likely) young hoodlums broke in, stole all the items inside the store, and spray painted the word "Dumb" throughout the interior.  The store was quickly repaired and additional security cameras were installed...even inside the prada bags with no bottoms.

While I failed to see much connection between Donald Judd and this piece at first, in fact there seems to be.  The artists chose Prada in particular becuase of the minimal style of displays and overall store layout & design, which does in a way, mimic Judd's uber-minimal artwork.  I can see it much more clearly from the below vantage point:

Prada Store by Elmgreen and Dragset:

The Chinati Foundation with works by Judd:

I must say that despite the fact this is somewhat silly, it is also quite witty and just plain fun.  And honestly, these days, that is, in my opinion, the most successful contemporary art.  Just fun.  Read more here.

No comments:

Post a Comment