Donald Judd - Contemporary Art Part I New York Thursday, May 17, 2007 | Phillips
  • Provenance

    Gagosian Gallery, New York; Private collection, Minneapolis

  • Catalogue Essay

    “Judd’s interest in color is closely connected with his mention of ‘beauty’ as an attribute that could be used as a criterion in viewing his art. With the group of horizontal, sheet-aluminum wall pieces begun in 1983, where he uses a whole number of colors, this interest took on greater importance. Here color takes on a leading role, creative role. Judd used open aluminum boxes in three different formats (30, 60 and 90 cm), and screwed them together to create objects up to 450 cm in length. In addition he made a number of wall pieces – some high, some two-part – as well as a total of seven free-standing monumental containers out of identical, large aluminum units (each 150 cm long). For this group, Judd chose exclusively boldly colored gloss paints, which were enameled into the material by means of a relatively complicated process. Where he had previously concentrated on a maximum of two colors, now he put together complex, strongly contrasting color combinations, generally in multiples of two (4, 6, 8 etc.). In doing so, he was careful to distribute the colors so that no adjacent units were in the same shade,” (D. Elger, ed., Donald Judd Colorist, Ostfildern-Ruit 2000, p. 27).

  • Artist Biography

    Donald Judd

    American • 1928 - 1994

    Donald Judd came to critical acclaim in the 1960s with his simple, yet revolutionary, three-dimensional floor and wall objects made from new industrial materials, such as anodized aluminum, plywood and Plexiglas, which had no precedent in the visual arts. His oeuvre is characterized by the central constitutive elements of color, material and space. Rejecting the illusionism of painting and seeking an aesthetic freed from metaphorical associations, Judd sought to explore the relationship between art object, viewer and surrounding space with his so-called "specific objects." From the outset of his three-decade-long career, Judd delegated the fabrication to specialized technicians. Though associated with the minimalist movement, Judd did not wish to confine his practice to this categorization.


    Inspired by architecture, the artist also designed and produced his own furniture, predominantly in wood, and eventually hired a diverse team of carpenters late in his career.

    View More Works


Untitled (Swiss box progression)

Painted aluminum.
11 3/4 x 71 x 11 3/4 in. (29.8 x 180.3 x 29.8 cm).
Stamped and numbered "DONALD JUDD 87-42" on the reverse.

$600,000 - 800,000 

Sold for $768,000

Contemporary Art Part I

17 May 2007
7pm New York