As a native Texan, there are a few things everyone must put on their bucket list. Amongst those, paint the cars at Cadillac Ranch!
For those who aren’t aware of this Texas staple, it is a unique art installation dating back to 1974, when an Art collective entitled "Ant Farm" did the unthinkable. They buried dated Cadillac cars nose deep in the middle of the Amarillo flatlands in a wheat field. Some years later they were relocated approximately 2 miles up the road just off the now I-40 corridor. At the time, Route 66 still flourished and the cars became yet another roadside stop on the highway that seemed to link the odd from Chicago to California.
Graffiti naturally just started to occur and now is even encouraged as people of all ages visit the site to leave their mark on the pop culture iconic cars.
The location has been noted by music videos, recreated in animation and published in publications nationwide for their unique appeal. The response to the cars is overwhelming as daily visitors make their way through the fence line and down the near quarter mile trek from the roadside toward the cars. They are some of the most photographed icons of the Texas Panhandle and have been granted the nickname "Carhenge" following their stone counterparts.
Our trip there was a cold one, arriving at dawn with temperatures in the low 30s. The walk from car to cars was brisk to the say the least, as our breath was puffing little clouds in the early morning air. We took a can of spray each and quickly made our mark before enjoying some light hearted photos and fun at the site.
Thinking back now, it is interesting to know just how many people had taken the same path to make their mark. The cars, now covered in so many layers of paint that appear thick in some regions almost padded looking, have been a staple longer than either myself or Pam have been living. Still they remain, unlike so many things which have faded over time.
This unique one of a kind experience is something more than just graffiti, it is a write of passage for those in Texas as it is one of our most noted pieces of longstanding art and sculpture. Being a part of our great state everyone should make the venture. Though the road might be long, it is something which sets Texas apart from all other.