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"Stedelijk Museum" Tag


Donald Judd, Chair


Saturday, December 15, 2018

Donald Judd, Chair

By Mara-Luna & Sharan

Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam

While walking around De Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam we got the assignment to select one design object out of the Base Collection of the Stedelijk Museum. This object would become our subject for a research about the different approach on information of different media such as the Internet, magazines, books and others.

The selection procedure was not an easy assignment. In some occasions we misinterpreted an artwork for a design work and visa versa. After a search of a few hours we both selected, by coincident, the same object, which was the “Chairs/Ameublement” by Donald Judd. The simple square shapes and the miner variations of the three chairs exhibited caught our attention.

Donald Judd is an American artist and designer most famously known for his minimalist works. Judd is, from origin, an artist and started designing furniture after he moved from Soho, New York to Marfa in 1973, Judd was unsatisfied with the furniture available at the local stores and so he started to build his own furniture such as the beds for his children and tables and chairs for his new home.

Children’s bed

His beautifully and most off all simplistic designed chairs, mostly made out of wood, are easily recognizable due to their primary colours and simple ‘practical’ squared shapes just as other works/furniture he made.

At the very beginning of our research, we started comparing articles of the internet.The first thing we noticed was the difference in the writing style.

In the articles we found on the internet most of the writers played around loosely with their chosen words and used a somewhat simple vocabulary in talking about the work. In the books there was a ‘deeper’ approach to the work of Donald Judd. The books, such as A good chair is a good chair give different insights to his works. There are more comparisons made and different people like curators review his work. This could in the end be seen as a broader perspective on his work.

During our research we stumbled across a great blog at the Rietveld Design Blog.  In this blog the writer explains how to make one of Judd’s chairs from scratch and shows the process step by step. It was interesting to have this absolutely different approach in the research. It gave us an opportunity to dive into Judd’s practicality in the making process of the chairs.

Donald Judd himself mostly describes his furniture in his essays just simply in how they were made and why; the why as in choice of material, shape and space. Not much words are spend on the ‘idea behind’ the chair.

While on the internet – and also in books written about him- his chairs are way more described following the concept of his work and the philosophy of Judd in general.

I think Donald Judd very much wanted to make clear in his specific objects/furniture and in his choice of ‘explaining’ them that the chairs exist as themselves and nothing more than that.

In that sense it was interesting to find this different attitudes in the media we encountered during the research. We found that in everything there is written about, or by Judd himself, there is a certain tension of ‘what can be said and what not’ considering his chairs are, as he says ‘just chairs’.

This also brings us to an interesting other subject within Judd’s approach to his work; the fact that Judd used all his furniture in his own home. He uses his chairs (could we call it his art?) as the chairs that we also use in our home. Just like all the other furniture.

Before we started this research I (Sharan) had planned a trip to New York for during our autumn brake. I did not want to let this great chance go by to also pay a visit the Donald Judd foundation in SoHo New York. Luckily enough there was still one spot available to visit this beautiful and interesting building.

Judd Foundation

 

The building that Judd and his family called home for many years used to be on old sewing factory. Its huge open plan floors, massive windows and high ceiling’s are heaven for any artist to think, create, live and of course host friends and fellow artists.

 

Up on arrival a friendly lady who was our guide for today greeted me. At the ground floor a few paintings by Judd and Manifest Destiny by Carl Andre were exhibited.  We were kindly asked to take a seat on one of Judd’s iconic chairs.

After a small introduction we were guided around the building. The foundation was a very interesting place to visit but I have to say it did really feel like a museum and didn’t fulfill my curiosity. Overall the tour was very sterile and it seemed like the building had lost its living soul and had become purely an exhibition space.

So we can see his work everywhere, even touch it in his own home.  We can all read and talk about it, and have an opinion. The internet gives you words and pictures, the books give you insight and a place in art / design history. We have seen it in the Stedelijk Museum for the first time; no words, no touching, no history.  Just three chairs, in a museum.

The chairs Judd designed are still for sale at the Donald Judd Foundation for the casual sum of almost $3000,-  https://judd.furniture/#chairs-stools

Stedelijk Design Show 2015 /Relevant Highlights


Monday, December 1, 2014

 

16 Rietveld Basic Year students visited the Amsterdam Stedelijk Museum to examine the items in the permanent survey of the design collection.

Does the Stedelijk exhibit all these design items simply because they are in their depot.

Do the collection criteria still have any significance today.

Do these design items have any relevance for us, our life or work,now? Is it possible to make a clear statement about that.

If you click on the image a caption will appear –just as a in a real museum– presenting information and a personal reflection on why that item is considered relevant. You can review the whole exhibition in pop-up mode.

 

click on images to visit the exhibit

Gijs_Bakker_Waterman_2_Cropped

modelWieke_stool_SM

PatrickJouinWelcome-To-The-StoreBeowatch_SM2

tafel-stoelunfolded

DSC_0321 Schuitema_300

superstudio_gherpe_flippedVaclavCigler_headband

cow-chair_flipped Paulina_glass

 

IE


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I thought for a long time about the Kho Liang Ie and his work, looking for all sorts of information, I even went to the industrial area where the Stedelijk Museum Library situated, and could not write a word. The only thing that is on the Internet is a biography, in the library all books and articles only in dutch language (sorry, but I do not know dutch).
And then I got lucky and found a booklet called ‘IE’. Read all three of the essay (which were in english!) on Kho, and than one of them caught me.
It is very rare material about Kho Liang Ie and his works, whitch did not exist in the Internet before. Now it does! It is my contribution to the online library of brilliant people.

(more…)


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