Let’s start from the beginning, picking up where we left off, just after you bought 5 years ago. Moving in here, how did you create this space that feels very “you”?
“Every square inch was beige and now there’s basically no beige in here.”
“I had to paint everything, replace the floors, install new light fixtures. I think the building is really modern but I like modern. I like a little more of an earthy modern versus a super “lots of metal and lacquer” type modern. The whole vibe was ‘let’s have a pre-drink here’. I wanted there to be plenty of seating but it’s not set up to have friends come over to watch movies here or have a dinner party. That’s what I was going for in terms of the design.”
Do you feel like living downtown matched the experience you thought it was going to be?
“For sure. It’s been amazing to walk to so many things and be in the vibrance of living in the city. Being able to pop downstairs for a drink, I’ve really enjoyed that. It’s been interesting to be living downtown during coronavirus. But at the same time I really took advantage of being close to the Cherry Creek Trail and being able to walk to Confluence Park so I was able to get out quite a bit.
When we talked last I described this as a type of dream home and it still really is for me. It feels like I lived that dream and now it’s time to go do something else. I’m almost 43 and I think at a certain point you start craving different things. For me it was a little extreme in the sense that I’ve been craving the desert and am moving to a town of 1700 people that’s very remote. It’s the complete opposite of where I live now. Marfa is interesting that it’s in the desert. Some people have lawns but it takes an incredible amount of watering but what I really like is that people’s yards just return back to nature. You see these yards that are completely overrun with prickly pear cactus, its super cool. The expanse of the desert that surrounds Marfa is just stunning to me.”
Do you feel like moving is in response to being in a high rise condo building downtown during covid and needing more space to expand? Or has that desire always been there and has nothing to do with covid?
“I think maybe a little bit but I was definitely feeling the draw of Marfa before coronavirus. I had been there twice; in the summer of 2019 and then again in October. It was definitely a bit of a challenge to live downtown during covid. If I just wanted to pop outside, it was waiting for an elevator that only 3 people could be on at a time. You know with 700 people in the building that people probably have covid and they’re having to ride the same elevators. That was a challenge. I think the building really handled it as well as they possibly could. They enforced what I thought were reasonable restrictions. For three months the gym was closed. I would work out in here. Like all of us, was really holed up inside.”
The home you’ve created here is very special to you and a very curated environment based on exactly what you like, how do you feel leaving and having to dismantle this?
“Not great, honestly. It’s still a form of a dream home. I don’t look around and think, ‘get me out of here’. I still love it. I think that interior design is like putting on clothes. Whether or not you’re into fashion or interior design, you make choices. You have to choose a shower curtain or you have to choose a lamp. I think all of that says something. I really feel like what you put on your body and the space you choose to live in are extensions of who you are, what you value, what you believe.
I grew up that way. My mom decorated everything to some degree. Everything was a choice. Not necessarily the choices I would make but those were the ideas. My dad was from a small town in Indiana and was a lawyer but before that went to art school. He went to art school, taught art, and did some. I have one of his ceramic pieces in the hallway. He would draw with us when we were kids. There was always an appreciation for art and to some degree design. My parents aren’t as into modern art as I am. I grew up with those ideas. None of the pieces I have in here are expensive but they’re meaningful to me.”
Are you trying to recreate this feel in Marfa or do you want to create something totally different?
“This unit feels like a blank slate to me in a lot of ways. I wanted big windows and just big white walls. It’s got that ‘1960’s glass house blank slate’ kind of feel. That’s what I liked about it. The direction I’ve gone with it is this earthy, minimal, modern, kind of thing. I feel like Marfa in some ways really lends itself to that. I think it’ll be a similar vibe but probably a little more earthy.”
What’s causing you to do this right now – to sell this house that you love and move somewhere else? What provided the impetus to actually do it?
“Two things, on one level I had it in my head over the last few years since I’ve been visiting Marfa, felt like when I found the right house I would know, and I just knew. I just knew this was the house. Then on another level, I think the move there is really, this is gonna sound whatever but I’ll just go for it, like a commitment to something that I love just because I love it. Kind of a commitment to myself in a way in that I’m not making the move to be closer to the people that I love. It’s really that I feel what feels like a powerful connection to this place. Which isn’t something that I’ve seen modeled in my life. It’s not what my parents or my siblings or to my knowledge, any of my friends, have done. It’s really a response to that strong sense of connection to that place and that geography. It’s hard to explain in the sense that I don’t know many other people that have felt, or at least expressed to me, how strongly they feel about a place to the point that they would pack up and go live in a place that doesn’t square with anything else in their life. I’m not moving there for work. I’m not moving there because I know a lot of people there.
Marfa has a lot going for it. It’s not like I’m moving to any small town in far west Texas. It’s very unique. I think a lot of people if they visited it they would get it. People either get it or they don’t, that’s for sure. But there’s lots of people that get it. My story is a lot of people’s stories there. That place feels very important to the people that live there. Maybe not all of them but to alot of them. I don’t know if I’ve ever been to a place where people feel so invested in it. Those are some of the things that I find really appealing about Marfa.”
Any other thoughts?
“To me any home is a sanctuary. I think anything can be sacred to you personally. I think everyone should decide for themselves what is sacred to them and treat it that way in your life. I try to do that and surround myself with things that I think are beautiful or meaningful because I think that’s an important part of life. I don’t know if it’s important for everyone but it’s important for me.”
Photography by: Jordan Facin