USA, 2003
Donald Judd

Wood & Plywood Furniture
Douglas Fir
80 × 45½ × 43¾”

Judd also worked with furniture, design, and architecture. He was careful to distinguish his design practice from his artwork, writing in 1993:

“The configuration and the scale of art cannot be transposed into furniture and architecture. The intent of art is different from that of the latter, which must be functional. If a chair or a building is not functional, if it appears to be only art, it is ridiculous. The art of a chair is not its resemblance to art, but is partly its reasonableness, usefulness and scale as a chair ... A work of art exists as itself; a chair exists as a chair itself.”

The first furniture, a bed and a sink, Judd designed in 1970 for Spring Street. After he moved from New York to Marfa his designs started to include chairs, beds, shelves, desks and tables. Judd was initially prompted to design furniture by his own dissatisfaction with what was commercially available in Marfa. Early furniture was made by Judd of rough, lumberyard-cut pine but he continually refined the construction of the wooden pieces, employing craftspeople using a variety of techniques and materials around the world.

Judd's activity in architecture and furniture design increased beginning around 1978, at which time he was involved professionally and romantically with Lauretta Vinciarelli, an Italian-born architect and artist. Vinciarelli lived and worked with Judd in Marfa and New York for roughly a decade and collaborated with him on projects for Providence and Cleveland, and her influence can be seen on his architecture and furniture design. In fact, in a 1986 article published in Architectural Digest, William C. Agee stated that Judd and Vinciarelli were "starting a firm."

At the time of his death, he was working on a series of fountains commissioned by the city of Winterthur in 1991, Switzerland, and a new glass facade for a railroad station in Basel, Switzerland.

In 1984, Judd commissioned Lehni AG, the fabricator of his multi-colored works in Dübendorf, Switzerland to produce his furniture designs in sheet metal, in finishes of monochrome colored powdercoat based on the RAL colour standard, clear anodized aluminium, or solid copper. Today, Lehni AG still fabricates Judd metal furniture in 21 colors, which are sold through the Judd Foundation alongside his furniture in wood and plywood. —Wikipedia

(Photo: Wright)