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Labor, Create: Producing and Conserving the Artistic and Vernacular in Marfa, Texas

Presentation by Pre-Doctoral Diversity Fellow Josh Franco

Tuesday Feb. 18th at 12p.m.

Handwerker Gallery


Marfa, Texas is host to American artist Donald Judd's collection of his and his peer's works. These include John Chamberlain, Roni Horn, Claes Oldenburg, Dan Flavin, and others. Thousands of artgoers trek to the high West Texas desert to experience these "permanently installed" works, most closely associated with Minimalism.

Marfa is also the site of an apparition of the Virgin of Guadalupe. An elaborate altar honoring the event and site exists in close proximity to Judd's collection at Chinati Foundation/La Fundacíon Chinati. This talk explores those who work with these objects not as artgoers, but as caregivers. The notions of care and conservation are central to this conversation. The Minimalist works and the altar require much labor on the part of their caretakers. Comparing these labors side by side exposes much about the priorities and interpretations of these works. Interviews with conservators of Minimalist works and the altar’s caretakers will provide the bulk of primary materials here.

This in-depth discussion of care and conservation will also demonstrate a resistance on two fronts: to the understanding of Minimalism articulated by multiple fields of design, particularly fashion, and to the widespread interpretation of sacred rituals and objects involved in Mexican-American and Chicano/a acts of faith as ephemeral. 

Josh T. Franco

2013 - 2014 Pre-Doctoral Diversity Fellow, Ithaca College

2013 - 2014 Imagining America PAGE Fellow

PhD Candidate, Art History
MA, Philosophy, Interpretation & Culture
Binghamton University, SUNY

Free and open to the public. Individuals with disabilities requiring accommodations should contact Mara Baldwin 607-274-3548  We ask that requests for accommodations be made as soon as possible





Presentation on the Artistic and Vernacular in Marfa, Texas by Pre-Doctoral Diversity Fellow Josh Franco 2/18 | 0 Comments |
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