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Thomas Houseago on Marfa, Judd and Storm King

7 May 2013

Aaron Curry and Thomas Houseago, Two Face, 2009

As I Went Out One Morning at Storm King is “the first large-scale presentation” of Thomas Housesago’s work. As part of the documentation of this monumental undertaking, the Los Angeles-based sculptor took part in a wide-ranging Q&A with Nora Lawrence, including some interesting observations on his time in Marfa as artist-in-residence with Aaron Curry.

“I was included in a residency at the [Marfa] Ballroom. Me and Aaron Curry were doing a show together. Something about being out there in West Texas, and yet you’ve also got this massive figure of [Donald] Judd there. Anyone going to Marfa is either filming a movie or going to see Judd. And me and Aaron were processing a lot of weird stuff. I had met Aaron very early on in my life in L.A. We were removed from our life in L.A., put in this desert with Judd–so that kind of brought out this extreme behavior in both of us that was very, very alcoholic. We were drinking from morning ‘til night and in this weird room in Marfa. I think what I was doing was processing all these pieces that I had kind of hidden. I was making a series of felt works almost as this kind of degenerate behavior, almost like going back to being a kid. We were sort of acting out all these kind of weird arguments like we we’re kids, like getting mad at each other…it was an odd thing. That really was like a long, drawn-out performance. And the “felty”—I was making it with glue, just like when you’re a child you’re doing these crafts. The desire that both me and Aaron had was that we were going to do that show, then destroy a lot of that work—just light it up, boom, move on. You can almost say Judd is the end of something. And we were playing out this thing of being infantile, young artists messing with this whole idea of Judd, this shining example…”

Keep reading at Storm King.

Houseago’s joint residency with Curry took place here at Ballroom Marfa in the spring of 2009. Their time culminated in the Two Face exhibition, and the accompanying limited edition prints.