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 June 1957 review in Arts Magazine of Don Judd noted, “To the unedited eye, his forms come across as strong non-objective shapes painted with bald simplicity on a flat-plane background, usually gray. Interest has to be extracted from the shapes themselves and from the way they are spaced, colorwise.”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 V.Y., “In the Galleries,” Arts Magazine, June 1957, 58.
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.
Cooke, Lynne. “Bielefeld: Donald Judd.” The Burlington Magazine, September 2002, 572 (ill.).