Marfa Myths is an annual music festival and multidisciplinary cultural program founded in 2014 by nonprofit contemporary arts foundation Ballroom Marfa and Brooklyn-based music label Mexican Summer. With Marfa Myths, the two organizations bring together a diversity of emerging and established artists and musicians to work creatively and collaboratively across music, film, and visual arts contexts. The festival is inherently embedded in the landscape of Far West Texas, and engages with Marfa’s cultural history and present-day community.
For more information visit marfamyths.com
Visual Artist in Residence
Matthew Craven challenges the sweeping narratives of American history textbooks, appropriating images of historical figures and sites and defacing or reconfiguring them within new aesthetic compositions. In combinations of illustration, collage, and painting, a march of tribal chieftains, Masonic leaders, and American generals and presidents appears in his images, their faces blotted out or colonized by Craven’s trademark geometric patterns. With his surreal mash-ups of historical references composed on antiquated paper, Craven creates his own pared-down symbols and mythologies. Many of Craven’s images are ambiguous, resisting cohesive narratives or easy interpretation; the artist has said that his compositions are not dictated by any political agenda but are based solely on aesthetic consideration. Matthew Craven was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan and currently lives and works in Los Angeles, California. He received his BFA from Michigan State University and his MFA from the School of Visual Arts, New York.
Dungen & Woods – Myths 003
For the third Marfa Myths release, we’re proud to present seven all-new songs written and recorded by Stockholm’s psychedelic masters Dungen and adventurous Brooklyn indie-folk pioneers Woods.
That this is the most music assembled for a Marfa Myths release to date is telling of a rare and special connection between Dungen and Woods, reignited by the circumstances of the occasion. Dungen’s Gustav Ejstes and Reine Fiske, and Woods’ Jeremy Earl and Jarvis Taveniere were provided the freedom to acclimate themselves to the unique frequencies of the Marfa experience without distraction. Marfa Myths 003showcases a seamless merging of two bands following the same track to different locations throughout their career, as if they’d been playing together for decades, an exhilarating and buoyant example of how shared experiences can foster truly wonderful music.
13th Floor Elevators gallery retrospective curated by Johan Kugelberg
The exhibition included original posters from the 13th Floor Elevator’s early days and a talk from historians Paul Drummond and Johan Kugelberg exploring the impact and influence of Erickson and his original band mates on American psychedelia.
Ballroom Marfa opened Strange Attractor on Friday of Marfa Myths. The exhibition explores the uncertainties and poetics of networks, environmental events, technology, and sound. The term “strange attractor” describes the inherent order embedded in chaos, perceivable in harmonious yet unpredictable patterns. Essential to these subjects are intimate, vast, and interconnected abstractions we must reconcile with our lived experience—the problem of how to clearly perceive and interpret the world. Sound and music pervade the exhibition, physically or latently, through production or allusion. Visitors are confronted with leitmotifs of capital, transmigration, and asylum. A lion’s share of debuting and commissioned works form the connective tissue of this expansive terrain.
“the [Marfa Myths] festival is perhaps the most extreme example in a recent trend toward intimate, meticulously curated music events” – NY Times
“no VIPs, no velvet ropes, just long brambles called ocotillo, which look like the kind of menacing weeds you expect to find on your way into hell – which is to say, Marfa Myths is a music adventurer’s dream.” – Billboard
Marfa Myths has been made possible by the generous support of The Brown Foundation, Inc. Houston; The City of Marfa; The Kirkpatrick Family Fund; National Endowment for the Arts; the Texas Commission on the Arts; the Ballroom Marfa Board of Trustees; and Ballroom Marfa members.
Special thanks to our partners Bazaar Marfa, The Capri, Crowley Theater, Do Your Thing, El Cosmico, Freda, Hotel Saint George, International Women’s Foundation, Judd Foundation, Lost Horse, Marfa Book Company, Marfa Recording Company, Marfa Studio of Arts, Pure Joy, Thunderbird Hotel, UNITED ARTISTS, Ltd., Visit Marfa, The Well, and Wrong Marfa.
Our media partner is Marfa Public Radio.
Special thanks to Elizabeth Abrahamson; Keith Abrahamsson; Shawn Adams; API Austin; Kaki Auftengarten; Chris Avedon; Lalo Baeza; Cody Barber; Vicki Barge; Rachel Barnhart; Skip Barts; David Beebe; Malinda Beeman; Yvonne Beltran; Yoseff Ben-Yehuda; Lori Beveridge; Brad Bingham; Daniel & Jessie Browning; Meg Burnie; Colt Miller & Logan Caldbeck; Joe Cashiola; Ross Cashiola; Lissa Castro; Vicente Celis; Kent Chandler; Kris Chau; Tom Clapp; Jon Coleman; Matt Craven; Rob Crowley; Tim Crowley; Sean Daly; Anthony DeSimone; Albert Dominguez; Fairfax Dorn & Marc Glimcher; Bailey Elder; Jeff Elrod; Danielle Firoozi; David Fenster; Cuca Flores; Zack Flores; Alec Friedman; Ylana Friedman; Genevieve Gallaway; Mona Garcia; Meghan Gerety; Brian Bagdonas & Rebecca Gilbert; Richard Griggs; Suzi Gruschkus; Mahala Guevara; Rob Gungor; Darby Hillman; Rae Anna Hample; Tilly Hawk; Blake Heidenheimer; Michael & Monika Hotchkiss; Gil Israel; Jon Johnson; Tim Johnson; Buck Johnston; Allison Josefowitz; Josh Jones; Flavin Judd; Rainer Judd; Saarin Keck; Sage Keith; Vance Knowles; Warren Konigsmark; Katie Kopacz; Matt & Mikelle Kruger; Belle Lancaster; Robert Lara; Virginia Lebermann; Paul Levers; Ian Lewis; Susannah Lipsey; The Lot; Minerva Lopez; Gil Lujan; Kyle Lusk; K Lye; Lily Lyons; Alex Marks; Jim Martinez; Jeff Matheis; Lauren Meader; Callie Meeks; Sara Melancon; Natalie Melendez; Renee Mick; Ty Mitchell; Jenny Moore; Caitlin Murray; Eileen Myles; Ann Marie Nafziger; Diana Nguyen; Peggy O’Brien; Riley O’Bryan; Jake Pepper; Elise Pepple; Michael Phelan; Pizza Foundation; Jesse Pollock; Brendan Principato; Chris Ramming; Elizabeth Redding; Barry Reese; Max Reid; Rachel Rember; Mandy Roane; Emma Rogers; Astrid Rosenfeld; Jess Rotter; Simone Rubi; Shelby Sandlin; Josh & Brooke Shepard; Colin Simmons; Suzy Simon; Gory Smelley; Vincent Smith; Andy Stack; Krista Steinhauer; Starr Timmons; Nancy Tovar; Cory Van Dyke; Francois Vaxelaire; John Vogler; Andrea Walsh; Molly Walker; Bridget Weiss; Matt Werth; Casey Whalen; and Emily Williams. And also to our friends at The Big Bend Sentinel, The Chinati Foundation, Hotel Paisano, Riata Inn, and the Marfa community at large.