When one talks about “found art,” I always thought of it as an action by the artist, not the observer.
While rolling along a deserted Texan highway in the high desert, our fearless driver let out a yelp and and pulled a U-turn that left me dumb founded. When I say that this desert is desolate, please take my word as gospel, because, aside from the odd road runner, we hadn’t seen much of any signs of life for an hour of driving. And yet, inexplicably, we retrace our treads to a Prada store.
There is a Prada store in the middle of the desert, featuring the 2005 Prada line. There is nothing else around it for miles and the doors do not open. Granted, this is because this lonely structure along U.S. Highway 90, outside of Valentine, Texas, is an art installation. According to its creators, Elmgreen and Dragset, Prada Marfa is a “pop architectural land art project.” In concept, it was meant to be abandoned and let gradually degrade into the desert. Reality, however, is slightly different. Six days aver the sculpture was completed in 2005, vandals defaced and broke in to steal the handbags and shoes. Yet, when we drove by, the sculpture was in fine form.