Saturday, August 17, 2013

Judd Foundation Block Tour (Belated Post)

This was my second trip on the Judd Foundation's Block Tour (featuring his living quarters, library and "studios" which resembled galleries). There were many differences from the past visit, primarily the weather. It was rainy and cool and the buildings were not faint inducing hot as they were previously.

This time I counted all of Judd's beds and the other dominant feature that I began to look for was his use of orange and cadmium.

Our tour guide, the estimable Eugene Binder, allowed us into the library where seven us stood in the doorway looking at the books curl in the heat and gradually yellow with age. One of my favorites was a college algebra book that was so warped it couldn't stand on it's own. The books displayed on the main table (focusing on architecture and the pyramids of Mexico) were placed in the same position Judd left them in November 1993. In between the book piles was a hat, carabiners, stones, and brushes (to sweep away the dust?). Rocks were commonly featured on the shelves both as display and functional book ends.

[Image via]

Judd undoubtedly had the best prosciutto cutting set in Marfa in full view in his kitchen. The ten person dining table, at the right angle, allowed one to see wax spilled on the wood from twenty years earlier. Three armored knights (2/3rds size) were suspended from the stairway, watching over those that dined with Judd and his family.

I continually marvel at the limited storage space in Judd's buildings. Everything is in sight. Kitchen utensils, bowls, plates, etc. are in full view. Arrowhead collections reside on tables within the living space. He was a minimalist that likes clutter (though it's neatly arranged). I would grow weary of this and want to clear off spaces for breathing room.

The Southwest Studio featured a lot of cadmium and Swimming Pool in the back right [Image via]

It was not difficult to imagine Judd's day-to-day existence, moving from one space to the next, arranging a pile here, taking a nap on a bed there. He had so many of these rooms and in today's age of leaving a smaller environmental footprint, it felt wasteful.

A dominant theme of the artwork in the studios was the presentation of sculptures that Judd did not want in public view. I love the idea of Judd living with the problematic works, not well conceived ones. I wonder what my walls would look like if I hung all the art that was unresolved and how that would change my working process (?).

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