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John Chamberlain, 24 variously titled works in painted and chromium steel, 1972-1983. Architectural adaptation by Donald Judd. Permanent collection the Chinati Foundation, Marfa, Texas. Photograph by Florian Holzherr, 2001
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MARFA ON MY MIND
by Hunter Drohojowska-Philp


Donald Judd slept a lot. After spending a weekend at Chinati, the art museum that he established in Marfa, Texas, I can understand why. To view the sundry installations by Dan Flavin, John Chamberlain or, most important, Judd himself, requires a two-mile walk around the complex of buildings once known as Fort D.A. Russell. The 340 acres of land extends to a barely visible horizon of low-slung mountains, an unbroken vista but for Judd’s massive concrete containers, standing sentinel. So much space is enervating. It defies the very concept of an agenda. When asked the date, a local Marfian answers, "Does it really matter?" In Marfa, it doesn’t seem to matter -- which is a congenial condition for a nap and explains the beds that Judd kept in his studios.

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