The sprawling New York studio and home of artist Donald Judd opens to the public this month, and remains virtually unchanged from the time of his death in 1994.
Constructed by Nicholas Whyte in 1870, the five-storey building at 101 Spring Street in New York is the last surviving, single-use, cast-iron building in its neighbourhood, but this isn’t its main claim to fame. The building was purchased by Donald Judd in 1968 and was used by the artist as his studio and primary residence until his death in 1994. Following a laborious and meticulous three-year, $23million restoration of the property, it opens to visitors this month.
A key exponent of Minimalism, Judd used 101 Spring Street’s vast spaces to showcase his own artworks, and those of other artists he admired, and it was here that he formalised his ideas regarding ‘permanent installation’ – his belief that a work of art’s placement is critical to one’s understanding of the work itself. In 1977, Judd spoke of the significance of 101 Spring Street, when he stated: “The interrelation of the architecture of 101 Spring Street, its own and what I've invented, with the pieces installed there, has led to many of my newer, larger pieces, ones involving whole spaces. Several main ideas have come from thinking about the spaces and the situation of that building."
During his lifetime, Judd installed each floor of the building with pieces from his collection of over 500 objects, including artworks by Jean Arp, John Chamberlain, Marcel Duchamp, Ad Reinhardt and Kurt Schwitters, along with furniture by Alvar Aalto, Gerrit Rietveld and others. As much as possible, the renovated building has been left exactly as it was when Judd was alive, and as well as admiring his collection, visitors will see Judd’s more mundane practical accoutrements as they tour his kitchen, bedroom and other living areas.
With renovations having been completed on June 3 2013, the building can be explored on guided tours from June 18, with tickets now available to book via the Judd Foundation website . Guided tours will be held on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays with admission costing $25 for adults or $12.50 for concessions.
See our gallery of 101 Spring Street, Donald Judd's New York home, here .