Monday, 7 March 2011

Donald Judd and Sol Lewitt Images for assignment 2:4

The assignment asks us to make notes and record images by the work of two minimalist artists who also work in sculptures.

The two I have chosen are from the early minimalist movement in the 1960's and 1970's They started out as artists on paper and moved into structures or sculptures. These structures often used man made materials such as fibre glass, concrete and plastic as well as wood and metals including steel and copper.

Donald Judd described his free standing sculptures and furniture as "specific objects". He designed and made very unfussy stripped back functional furniture which was very unusual at the time as most people were used to ornate or comfortable furniture. Having spent ages looking at images of it today I feel like I have been looking at the main influence for Heals, Habitat, Conran, Geoffrey Drayton, Ikea, Phillip Stark, Ercol and Ligne Roset and much of the contemporary furniture designers of today, many of whom would have been formulating ideas from the 1960's and have created timeless pieces that many of us enjoy in our homes today.

I am very interested in furniture design and functionality and so was interested to look at the work of Donald Judd. I find a lot of minimalist sculptures quite boring and cold, although I can see that years ago it would have been forward thinking and progressive as well as unseen. I also find the fact that behind many simple, repetitive pieces there is often a complicated meaning which requires a lot of knowledge or reading up on.

The masters, Vermeer, Velasquez and Rembrandt, to name a few, who painted before the minimalist movement were storytellers and the journalists of their day with all the news easily decipherable in their paintings.

Anyway I am now going to show you a selection of the works I have found by Donald Judd

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from my iPad

The second artist whose work I have collated images of is Sol Lewitt. He is recognised as one of the founders of minimalism and conceptual art.

In the mid 1980's he worked with concrete blocks and then in the 1990's he moved on to large, bright, jazzy geometric shaped canvases in gouache.

If I were to develop my own three dimensional sculpture I imagine it would be something functional such as a piece of furniture. A table with green fibre glass on top and White metal legs maybe or a series of wooden chairs or bookcases. I have drawn some images in my sketch book journal.

The idea of an outside structure, or climbing frame appeals to me, one that the children could climb all over and play in and explore with different levels and compartments. It could be made in brightly coloured fibre glass and be constructed of a series of geometric shapes. There are often structures such as this found in the children's play areas and as I have mentioned earlier much of today's furniture is designed in the minimalist style so really this style is all around us.

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