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Frank Stella

Born in: 1936 United States

  • Movement

    Lyrical Abstraction, Abstract Expressionnism
  • Famous artist

    Frank Stella

    Biography

    Born in 1936 in Malden, Massachusetts, Frank Stella lives and works in New York. He is painter considered to be the forerunner of minimalism, he is one of the main representatives of Op Art and shaped canvas. He studied arts at the Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts and history at Princeton University, and was influenced by abstract expressionism and artists such as Pollock or Kline. Later he renounced the expressive use of painting and rejected the lyricism of this movement. He focused on the contrasts between shapes and colours and painted extensively shaped canvases. This led him to break the boundaries of classical geometric work and his paintings evolved into real sculptures from the 1980s onwards. 

    He had his first solo show in 1960, and exhibited his "Black paintings", that he had already exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City during the "Sixteen Americans" exhibition. These works are the culmination of his reflections on object-painting and marked his break with abstract expressionism. The compositions are defined by the representation of black stripes separated by fine white lines: here again the artist studies the opposition between forms and (non) colours and uses painting as an end and not as a means of expression or representation. Indeed, as Carl Andre, the minimalist painter and sculptor, puts it, "Frank Stella has found it necessary to paint stripes. There is nothing else in his painting. Frank Stella is not interested in expression or sensitivity. He is interested in the necessities of painting. (...) His stripes are the paths of brush on canvas. These paths lead only into painting.” This exhibition marked the starting point of the minimalist movement. 

    He developed the concept of "shaped canvases", the contour merging with the painted geometric shapes. He plays with colours. White, black, multicoloured, the artist uses different media, such as aluminium, copper, or steel. His compositions are generally series. In the mid-1970s, he took a turning point in his artistic approach as he began to work in relief, influenced by the Baroque movement. 

    Since the 1980s, Stella has been interested and has produced almost exclusively sculpture

    Frank Stella’s work has been presented in numerous exhibitions, and he is one of the few artists to have been able to attend his own retrospective during his lifetime. In 1970 and then nearly ten years later, exhibitions were dedicated to him at the Musée d'Art Moderne de la ville de Paris. His sculpture "The Prince of Hamburg" was installed at the National Gallery of Art in Washington in 2001.

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    Frank Stella, Whitney Museum of American Art, 13 January - 13 March 1983, Print

    Frank Stella

    Whitney Museum of American Art, 13 January - 13 March 1983, 1983
    74.8 x 52 inch
    Print

    $5,773

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    • Print

    • Print Lithography

    • American Artist