Studio Tour

Studio Tour: Judit Just

by Annie Werbler

We first took notice of tapestry artist Judit Just after stumbling upon her extraordinary Instagram page, organized as a gradient color-wave checkerboard that subtly weaves tones in and out, in rhythm similar to that of her artwork. Originally from Barcelona, Just now calls Asheville, NC home, and has set up her studio in the green energy house she shares with spouse Samuel Clemons. After meeting her future husband, who was an American teaching English in her hometown, they visited his family and daytripped  to Asheville. Upon finding a supportive creative community, they decided to take the international jump and move to the comfy, fun-loving city nestled into the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Though now far away, Barcelona and its rich artisanal history have shaped how Just works. She is deaf in one ear and wears glasses, so touch is her strongest sense — she describes how she “almost sees with her hands.” Just originally planned to become a designer, but left fashion school with a desire to instead create the very fabric that designers use. She has mastered all types of textile art techniques, learning dyes, fabrics, applications, embroidery, weaving, techniques old and new, natural and chemical, with big projects and small works.

In Asheville for the last two years, Just has taken her traditional skillset and applied it to the wealth of materials available in her new country. She also adores living in the River Arts District, has adopted a lovely pooch, and tends to a vegetable garden with a big strawberry patch. In her new hometown, Judit has been able to play with her craft in a great space and have a lot of fun while she’s at it.

Just’s main mission is to avoid superficiality and always embrace a DIY technique that encourages new discovery. She patently avoids the easy way, and seems to find the mysterious in everyday things. Her greatest passion is reworking an old technique and updating it for the 21st century in a way to looks new to people’s eyes. She has never lost her hometown ethic, and in the land of opportunity, feels more free than ever to let it grow. —Annie

Photography by Judit Just

Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
Sometimes Just takes details from her own tapestries as inspiration, and she tends to work in color waves, fixating on one color for months at a time.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
Judit Just, Samuel Clemons, and Nina Love (who was trying to escape the whole time this photo was being taken).
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
In the studio of weaver Judit Just, details of a moodboard and hanging threads.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
A gaggle of mobiles hangs before a warp readying for the loom.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
A repurposed Singer sewing table and old family suitcases that have seen more miles than Just herself.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
This red and black chair is an heirloom centerpiece of the studio. The chesterfield sofa originally came from London, but was sourced locally.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
The studio occupies the basement level of a three-story green energy home in West Asheville, NC. Just does most of her work at those two cozy desks.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
Vintage jewelry cases and memorabilia found in markets around Barcelona.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
A peek inside jewelry cases yields jewel-toned woven and embroidered treasures instead.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
A basic IKEA cubby bookshelf filled with supplies. The loom rests on a family heirloom drafting table. Color chart atop bookshelf was homework from textile art class long ago.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
Just's beloved eight-harness loom.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
"Threads and colors, and threads and colors."
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
Some more detail of the textural materials used in Just's work.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
Vintage tin boxes full of threads, buttons, and beads, and antique toys collected over a lifetime of travel.
Studio Tour: Judit Just, on Design*Sponge
"My favorite thing about my studio is all the afternoon light" - Judit Just

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