The city is humanity's laboratory, where people flock to dream, create, build, and rebuild. Each year, we spotlight the building blocks of that progress — bold ideas that promise to enrich our cities and economies.
Once, the town of Marfa was most remembered for being the place where the 1956 James Dean/Liz Taylor/Rock Hudson extravaganza Giant was filmed. These days, this rapidly gentrifying but still-isolated place is much more tied up with the legacy of minimalist artist Donald Judd, who first rented a house here in 1971. By the time of his death, in 1994, he was one of area's biggest land owners, and the town was on the way to becoming an art colony.