I’m in Marfa this week, at El Cosmico with AC+D. Last night I was reading up on Judd; the section of that reading that stuck with me as we toured the Judd Foundation was this: the piece that catalyzed his realization that his work no-longer needed to be mounted on a wall (<—this was big).
Judd first realized that format should be form in 1962. He built untitled (1962), but found it hard to hang and left it down for a while. Down it made its own place. “I left it on the floor,” he told an interviewer in 1971, “and that didn’t seem to bother it much.” Judd created this work, lived with it, and attempted to understand how it was different from the paintings and reliefs he had made up until that moment.
—The Writings of Donald Judd, Chinati Foundation
And then, not long into our walk-through, our guide pointed out this piece and I felt like I was in the presence of a celebrity—named untitled 1962. [Photos of very similar piece here, no photos allowed at Judd.] I like the way he says “…that didn’t seem to bother it much” as if it made the decision to be work that lived on the floor. If only it were that simple.