Gallery sitting can sometimes get a bit boring, especially when you are obligated to stay close to the desk rather than get pulled into the work exhibited. The bright spot, however, is the chance to speak with the various visitors who have decided to explore Marfa and Ballroom. This week I had the pleasure to speak with two of those visitors who stopped in for the final weekend of our Alix Pearlstein exhibition.
Phil and Betty Raughton had only just arrived in town from Abilene and even after the five hour drive were in good spirits and eager to see the town. The Raughtons helped pass the time by regaling me with stories of their artist son, Brian, who currently lives in New York City, working as a hotel concierge by day and DJ by night. We ended the lively conversation — Betty declined to be interviewed but was happy to talk off-mic — with a breakdown of the different dinner options in Marfa and I got to hear their thoughts on the town thus so far.
Ballroom Marfa: What brought you guys to Marfa?
Phil Raughton: The CBS story on Marfa and we wanted to come see for ourselves what it was like.
BM: And where are you both from?
PR: Abilene, Texas. 358 miles.
BM: Did you drive all the way here?
PR: All the way!
BM: Was it a nice drive though?
PR: Oh yeah… It’s only about 5 hours here, so…
BM: Only! And is Ballroom the first place you visited?
BM: What did you think of the gallery?
PR: I love it, absolutely love it. It’s very unusual and it was not what I expected. It was more than what we expected. It was very good, we enjoyed it.
BM: Did you like Alix Pearlstein’s work?
PR: Ah! I liked it, it was a little unnerving, I’d like to know how she did it, but it was very well done. I’ve never seen anything like it before.
BM: And of the other works in the gallery what was your favorite?
PR: I like the Prada sign. [points to James Evans’ Prada Marfa limited edition photograph]. I love it. I’ve seen the CBS broadcast two or three times and that’s still my favorite. I just love it because it’s so isolated.
BM: What are you looking forward to the most in Marfa?
PR: We’re going to go over and see the lights, if we can find them. The weather is fantastic and everybody that we’ve met here so far has been absolutely wonderful.