Marfa, TX has been a place Fielder has wanted to take me since we were dating. Funny how it took us almost 6 years to get there! We went to Marfa for the Marfa Invitational, an art fair the is hosted in, well Marfa! The show features art galleries from around the world showcasing the next generation of artists works that you can purchase, or in our case, enjoy! In today’s blog post, I wanted to share more details from our trip. From where we stayed, what we ate, and where we bought some really great souvenirs! Keep on reading for more on Marfa!
For us, we ended up leaving around 3:45 AM on Friday in order to make it to Marfa by 12PM. The drive from Denton to Marfa was roughly 7 hours and 40 minutes non stop, but we made it in a little over 8 hours. We stopped at around 6:45 am to make a quick sandwich for breakfast, and fill up on gas. Our next stop was Odessa, for a Target run because your home girl, of course, forgot something. We ended up driving straight to Marfa after our quick second stop, and made it just in time for the art fair!
Catch the scenery of the drive in the YouTube video!
One good thing about leaving so early is one, little to no traffic, and two, we got to watch the sunrise! Perfect to watch as we were cruising down I20. For us, we mapped out where we would need to fill up which helped us plan a more efficient drive down. It also made for a much smoother arrival to Marfa.
Of course for our first time to Marfa, TX, we had to stay at El Cosmic. Known for their iconic eclectic glam grounds, this iconic spot was a must stay for our first visit. We ended up in their Yurt, a chic circular space fitted with a king bed, twin bed, lounging couch, and of course an air conditioner. The yurt also included bathrobes for us and towels to make our communal shower experience much more comfortable. The Yurts, and majority of the sites, included outdoor lounging and seating. We enjoyed a few nights outside on the patio painting and watching the stars. It really was quite comfortable!
I know I mentioned communal bathrooms, and you’re probably thinking “Do I have to shower in the open with other people?!” And the answer is nope! El Cosmic had showers/bathrooms for every part of the glamping parts of the lot. So the three yurts had 2 showers, the teepee’s had showers, and the safari tents had showers. The RV’s and airstreams all included a private outdoor shower and restroom with each unit. Oh yeah, the showers were located outside. Honestly though, I loved it. It was very clean, and there was always a shower available or a toilet. So you really weren’t waiting around, even with there being no vacancy that weekend! 10/10 would recommend the yurt if you ever go to El Cosmic in Marfa!
Marfa, TX has roughly 1,700 people already living there. Everything is centrally located in downtown, so you could park and wander around without going to far. It was actually really nice! Here’s a list of everywhere we went to:
Bar Saint George – This was my first stop when we rolled into town. Why? Because they had lemonade. We ended up getting pretty thirsty walking around town, so we made a pit stop here! After lemonades and a delicious shrimp kabob, I snagged a cappuccino to go, and we kept wandering around! This was also my go to spot for coffee over the weekend, partially because it was right by the invitational space, so it was easy to run in and grab something to start the day with!
Conchineal – We made a Reservation to ensure that we were able to enjoy their multi course seasonal menu. We ended up eating some of the best food I have had in a while here, and my personal favorite, a delicious bone marrow served with house made harvest grain bread. If you make it to Marfa, I highly recommend you grab a reservation! Catch the full course in this reel here:
Marfa Burrito- Looking to mix up your breakfast game in Marfa? This hole in the wall is a MUST! But just a heads up, they are cash only. So be sure to bring about $15-20 if there are two people eating. Trust me when I say, the burrito is the size of your head and filled to the brim with delicious (insert whatever you ordered here). A must visit while you’re down there,
Planet Marfa – We ended up catching drinks with another couple we met at a live art instillation, and ended up at Planet Marfa! The place was POPPIN’ when we arrived at around 10:45PM. We ended up grabbing a couple of G&T’s and chatting for about an hour and a half together. I will say, the space was a little loud, but it was still fun enjoying the fresh air after dark with a drink in hand. Most of the places do close at 5PM in Marfa, so the fact that Planet Marfa is one of the few places open at night, makes it pretty bumpin’! Great for an after hours drink, just definitely a little loud.
Dairy Queen – Have you really visited Marfa, TX if you didn’t visit the Dairy Queen? Take a step back in time and enjoy an afternoon filled with blizzards, burgers, and Dilly Bars in the fast food chain in town. There’s nothing like a small town Dairy Queen, and the Marfa Location is no exception. We were in and out all weekend, whether it was to order a cone or lunch, this was kind of our pit stop before we headed back to El Cosmico each day. Food was as you would expect from a Dairy Queen, but it’s about the nostalgia, right?!
The Sentinel – Lately, I have wanted more fluffy croissants than ever before. I mean what’s better with your morning coffee than a buttery croissant?! (It’s nothing that’s what 🥐) We ended up here on our last morning after we checked out early from El Cosmico, and enjoyed the morning sunshine and drinks before we started our Judd Tour. A beautiful location, that also happened to be a store AND the local newspaper! The building really is a catch all for Marfa. There were gallerists enjoying echoers company talking about sales, people working on laptops on the courtyard, folks just enjoying the fresh Monday morning air sipping coffee. (And then there’s me, taking videos of my croissant and americano like the documentarian I am.) It’s a must for a quick bite and coffee to go, or if you need to find a quiet spot to get a little bit of work done. Highly recommend!
Of course there are countless other food options in Marfa, these just happened to be where we ate this time! Looking for more food recs? Check out this post here!
Wrong Marfa – The artist behind this store is Camp Bosworth, and he’s a Marfa favorite! If you’re looking for a unique way to remember your time in Marfa, TX, this is the place. I myself grabbed on of the carved Prada Marfa bags to remember our first weekend in Marfa! Fielder ended up grabbing a few other wooden things as gifts for some friends, and I snagged matchboxes with various kitten scenes on them for my girls back at home. Besides the wooden figures and unique art pieces, Wrong Marfa is also a gallery! While we were there, they were showing LET ME HEAR YOUR BODY TALK by Joey Fauerso and Gyan Shrosbree from February 4 – May 8, 2022. It was truly a beautiful show, and we even had a chance to see what Camp had kept in his Marfa studio from the show as well later in the weekend. Overall, it’s the perfect place to catch one of a kind Marfa Memories! Want to learn more about the mind behind Wrong Marfa? Catch the mini documentary here!
Marfa Art Supply – While we were in Marfa, we thought it would be fun to paint postcards while we were there! So, off we went to Marfa Art Supply to buy a set of Beam Paints, postcard book, and a few brushes to paint with. Fielder and I loved the shop. If you’re an artist and you’re looking for unique items to add to your kits, I highly recommend Marfa Art Supply!
Commissary – This was more of a boutique that we stumbled into on our first day. With a wall full of Stetson hats, table full of crystals, and a jewelry bar where you could create your own jewelry. Definitely more of a boutique and tourist vibe, but a really fun spot to check out!
Cactus Liqueurs – Do you like rare and unusual alcohol? Are you a fan of plants? Then this is the store for you! Located in an old gas station, this plant store-liquor shop hybrid is a must visit! We grabbed a bottle of sotol, which is a liquor that is made from the plant called Nahuatl, a word tzotolin meaning “palm with long and thin leaves,” the word “sotol” refers to both a plant and a spirit. It’s traditionally from Northern Mexico, but it’s popularity is growing in the Southern states, so we grabbed a bottle! While I didn’t grab a plant this time, they have some really fun desert plants in their shop!
The Get Go – We ended up making a pit stop at the grocery store for a quick drink and chapstick. Y’all, Marfa is about 1 mile above sea level. This means it’s dry, the sun is hot, and you’ll get dehydrated faster! So of course we grabbed some drinks for our walk around town from the iconic Marfa Grocer!
Of course there are countless other shopping options in Marfa, these just happened to be where we shopped this time! Looking for more recs? Check out this post here!
The Art Tours
When in Marfa…you check out the art! Here’s where we went to see some amazing art:
Judd Foundation Properties – We saw two properties while we were in Marfa, The Block and The Chianti Foundation. The Block was where he lived while in Marfa. It was an old army outpost that he converted into a studio space and home for his family in the early 70’s. The tour itself walks you through a few iconic work spaces, along with showing off permanent works of art from his first show, to art from the 70’s. One thing I found unique about the space, is they left it just as it was when he passed. He was prepping for an art show in Germany, when he received his cancer diagnosis. Sadly, he passed in New York, only returning to Marfa to be buried. The home is earily still as it was when he left. What I also love, is on a few pieces of art, his children took the liberty to add their own “creative license” to a few pieces. It made me smile and our group had a good laugh, but I am sure those young kiddos received a scolding from Judd!
We also saw the Chianti Foundation, known for Judd’s iconic blocks. An artist collaborative with hundreds of permanent works of art throughout the property. Ironically, this also used to be an army fort in the 60’s, which he purchased and renovated to house permanent works of art from himself and other artists. We did a self guided tour through the grounds, but hope to go back soon and do the walking guided tour to view all of the works in all of the converted bunk houses.
Rule Gallery – My hubs has worked with Rule Gallery for years now. So getting to meet them in person was such a treat! Plus, we had the opportunity to view works by Renluka Maharaj. Not only did we view her works, we listened to her talk about what inspired her to make this new series titled Renluka Maharaj: Lambi Kahani. Getting to experience art is one thing, but getting a chance to hear the experience of making the art by the artist is a whole other thing itself!
Rule Gallery also had an open studio for another show they have at their second gallery. The open studio was viewing of Martha Hughes’s workspace and where she created part of her show Above Beyond, a beautiful display of colors and shapes on large canvases.
Camp Bosworth – If you want to see the studio space for yourself, catch the mini documentary here! The studio for Camp Bosworth is located in an old church in downtown Marfa. While it’s been remodeled a few times to accommodate the studio, it’s beauty still shines bright and you instantly feel welcome when you walk in. Plus, the smell of wood filling the air really reminds you of summertime bonfire’s that Texans love to have. This is where all of the Wrong Marfa wood worked items are made, and they scatter the space in such a fun way! Cones over here, Prada Bags over there, experimental projects litter a table, along with items from past shows for inspiration. It’s a dream!
When can I go back?!
I’ve already told our friends and fam that this place felt like home. Fielder and I felt it the moment we rolled into town. We knew we would end up calling Marfa home someday. From the welcoming community of artists, to the eclectic charm that runs through Marfa itself, this place just fits for us. We are already planning a trip back, because how could we not?!
Today’s blog post just scratches the surface of what we did in Marfa, and for it being a tiny dot on the map of no more that 1,700 people, there’s plenty to do to keep you busy. It’s one of those spaces where no matter where you turn, there is something you may not have seen the last time you were there.