According to an email broadcast last week, The Chinati Foundation’s John Chamberlain Building needs roof repairs, the adobe and concrete walls need patching, and the Donald Judd-designed wooden doors and windows are rotting and need to be replaced. The Foundation is looking for year-end donations to help pay for the fixes, calling the former wool and mohair warehouse “the largest and most beautiful permanent installation of the artist’s work to be found anywhere in the world.” Can’t argue.
Chamberlain Building Decrepit: Chinati Issues Plea for Fix-It Dollars
by Bill Davenport December 10, 2012
Chinati’s last newsletter (a good one) featured writing on Chamberlain from artists. This, by Mark Flood, is worth re-typing:
“I didn’t care then, and I don’t care now, that I never got friendly with that Skipper-on-Gilligan’s-Island-looking motherfucker. But I did love and do love, deeply and forever, his incredible sculptures. And you only have to look at the anal retentive, rectilinear, boring and unsatisfying knick-knacks his predecessors put out, the Cubist turds, to see how great he was, how different, what a paradigm shift in sculpture he created. You still see those wretched Cubist turds served up in museums… they’re good for you like castor oil or Metamucil, they’re good for you. They keep your art-history regular. David Smith and Julio Gonzalez and lesser lights. Yuck.”
Never had exposure to Chamberlain the man, but agree with Mark’s assessment of his work. Although David Smith’s early works hardly constituted Cubist turds.