[CLICK TO MAKE BIG; Photos from the Tips Line]
After a decade under wraps, 101 Spring Street has been released from the confines of its scaffolding bars and construction netting. In 2006, The New York Times called the cast iron home of late artist Donald Judd a "ghost ship at the corner of Mercer Street," as the structure underwent extensive restoration work. The initial project was estimated to last only three years and cost $8 million, but the effort drew out over the years and the budget swelled to $23 million until last month, when the netting started to come down (please see the update below). The building was a proto-artist loft in Soho—built in 1870 and used as a factory until it was purchased for $70,000 by Judd in 1968, where he lived and worked until his death in 1994. Now that the scaffolding and netting on Spring Street have been removed, one can see the 6,000 square foot cast iron facade with its 40 window bays. The building will be used as a museum and is scheduled to open to the public in June 2013.
UPDATE: Although the building has been under wraps for 10 years, Judd Foundation reps tell us nothing material occurred between 2002 and 2010. The foundation actually considered and rejected a three-year, $8 million plan to restore the facade and decided to undertake a renovation budgeted for $23 million that began in 2010 and is scheduled for completion by 2013.
· Judd Building Shows Its Face [WSJ]
· After 10 Years in Hiding, Soho Beauty Takes It All Off [Gothamist]
· The Proto-Loft, Reborn [NYT]