The eleven paintings that Donald Judd installed at the Cobb House, including this one, all date from between 1956 and 1958. Judd exhibited paintings from the same period in two shows at the Panoras Gallery in New York, Don Judd and Nathan Raisen (September 4–15, 1956) and Don Judd (June 24–July 6, 1957).
A September 1956 review in Arts Magazine of Don Judd and Nathan Raisen noted that “Judd’s painting stays closer to the surface with less interest in the shading off of color into depth . . . there seems to be less concern with the plastic effect of the paint and more interest in the imposition of strikingly bold design.”1
In her essay in Judd’s 1975 catalogue raisonné, Roberta Smith wrote of the abstract forms in these paintings, “The irregular shapes themselves are difficult to describe and look as if Judd took great care to make them that way.”2 Although Judd stopped painting after 1962, painting informed the rest of his career as an artist: “My thought comes from painting even if I don’t paint.”3
1 J.R.M., “Reviews and Previews,” Arts Magazine, September 1956, 17.
2 Roberta Smith, “Donald Judd,” in Donald Judd: Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings, Objects, and Wood-Blocks 1960–1974, ed. Brydon Smith. Exh. cat. (Ottawa: National Gallery of Canada, 1975), 8.
3 “Interview: Kasper König und Donald Judd,” in Donald Judd: Für Josef Albers, exh. cat. (Bottrop: Moderne Galerie Bottrop, 1977), 5. English transcript, Judd Foundation Archives, Marfa, Texas.
Smith, Brydon, ed. Donald Judd: Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings, Objects, and Wood-Blocks 1960–1974. Exh. cat. Ottawa: National Gallery of Canada, 1975, 8 (fig. 2).
Cooke, Lynne. “Bielefeld: Donald Judd.” The Burlington Magazine, September 2002, 572 (ill.).