Monday, January 18, 2016

Tombstone, Arizona, December 2015

On our way from Las Cruces, NM to Tucson, AZ, we detoured to Tombstone. Very, very touristy.

White Sands National Monument, New Mexico, December 2015

We stayed for a couple of days in Las Cruces, New Mexico. One of the highpoints of our stay was to visit White Sands National Monument. The sands are gypsum and are, indeed, stunningly white. 

Visitor Center -- PWA construction in Adobe

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Threatening skies

360 Degree Panorama

Prada Store art installation, Marfa, Texas, December 2015

About 30 miles west of Marfa and in the middle of nowhere is the famous Prada store, a permanent artwork.

Driving the Rio Grande, Presidio, Texas, December 2015

Following recommendations of the staffer at the Marfa Visitors Center, we made a day trip south from Marfa to Presidio and then down the Rio Grande to Lajitas and north again to Alpine and back to Marfa.

The landscape along the Rio Grande is stunning, to put it mildly. The contrast of the river and the mountains behind is great indeed. 

There was considerable history in the region, with the forces of Pancho Villa operating in the USA in the early 20th century as well as in Chihuahua at Ojinaga

Close to Presidio is Fort Leaton, which was a private fort and trading post from the late 1840s. 

Fort Leaton

Fort Leaton

The Rio Grande

The Rio Grande landscape, as enhanced by Google Photos

The resort at Lajitas

The resort at Lajitas

Chinati Foundation, Marfa, Texas, December 2015

The Chinati Foundation holds key works of art from Donald Judd, Dan Flavin and others. In the 1970s, Donald Judd acquired the former  Fort D. A. Russell in Marfa to house his work and work of his friends. The buildings of the fort have been converted as exhibit spaces. The work can only be seen with a docent -- we spent three hours at the Fort and at the Foundation's space in the downtown of Marfa. Truly amazing.

At the foundation, there are 15 untitled works in concrete, 1980-1984. You walk to see the works in their natural setting. The other works cannot be photographed.

Main offices at the Foundation

Part of the Fort

15 untitled works in concrete, 1980-1984

15 untitled works in concrete, 1980-1984

15 untitled works in concrete, 1980-1984

15 untitled works in concrete, 1980-1984 from a distance

Marfa, Texas, December 2015

In West Texas, we stopped at Marfa, which is an amazing little town filled with more than 20 art galleries. We knew nothing of Marfa but friends recommended it and we were very pleased to stop there for five nights. There is so much to do in the town and the area. I would love to return. Here is some of the cityscape.

The courthouse at night. 

The Ayn Foundation

Palace Theater



Hotel Paisano

Cycling the San Antonio River, December 2015

We had a few days in San Antonio, as we were trying to move quite quickly in a westerly direction. On a perfect day, we rode from the San Francisco De La Espada mission up the San Antonio River towards the city. The river authority is working to restore the river to its former self, with floodplains, tree planting and a lovely bike path that runs all the way to San Antonio. Great also to see police cycling on the path.

San Antonio River

Sculpture beside the bike path