Frank Stella (May 12, 1936); American painter and printmaker, noted for his work in the areas of minimalism and post-painterly abstraction. Stella lives and works in New York. (Wikipedia)

In 1959, Frank Stella gained early, immediate recognition with his series of coolly impersonal black striped paintings that turned the gestural brushwork and existential angst of Abstract Expressionism on its head. Focusing on the formal elements of art-making, Stella went on to create increasingly complicated work that seemed to follow a natural progression of dynamism, tactility, and scale: first, by expanding his initial monochrome palette to bright colors, and, later, moving painting into the third dimension through the incorporation of other, non-painterly elements onto the canvas. He ultimately went on to create large-scale freestanding sculptures, architectural structures, and the most complex work ever realized in the medium of printmaking. Stella's virtually relentless experimentation has made him a key figure in American modernism, helping give rise to such developments as Minimalism, Post-Painterly Abstraction, and Color Field painting.

"Stella’s main argument boils down to this: How to make paintings that don’t lose the status of paintings by becoming objects — paintings that evacuate the subjectivity of both the painter and the viewer, and replace it with historical necessity? But, by rejecting expression, interiority and the vulnerabilities that accompany them, in favor of a formalist rhetorical abstraction, didn’t Stella throw the baby out with the bathwater? By equating expression with drama rather than interiority, and by choosing to ignore what Kandinsky defined as painting’s “inner-necessity” in favor of a supposed historical necessity, did he also end up denying his viewer’s own inner-necessity? And by reifying painting, did he also end up reifying his viewer?"
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