Just 26 at the time of his second Castelli show in 1962, Frank Stella’s striped and shaped paintings were a revelation in the transition from Abstract Expressionism to Minimalism. Eight years later, The Museum of Modern Art in New York presented a retrospective of Stella’s work, making him the youngest artist ever to receive this honor.
Now 79, Frank Stella’s current retrospective at The Whitney is the most comprehensive presentation of his career to date, showcasing his prolific output. From the irreverent Benjamin Moore series of the late fifties to the Protractor series, painted in the palette of the sixties, to recent sculpture from 2014, this show lives up to the hype. Jointly curated by the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth and the Whitney, with input from Frank Stella, the show moves to Texas after its Whitney debut.
The exhibition fills the entire fifth floor, an 18,000-square-foot gallery that is the Whitney’s largest space for temporary exhibitions. The exhibition is not hung in a simple chronology. Artwork created 20 years apart are shown in close proximity, creating juxtapositions of color, form and process, revealing Stella’s creative evolution as an artist.
Frank Stella on making art:
The one thing I learned is not to say anything about my own paintings. You just have to make your own art, and whatever categories it falls into will come later.
Designed by Renzo Piano, the impressive nine-storey Whitney at 99 Gansevoort Street in the Chelsea Meatpacking district, opened in May 2015. Walk the High Line towards Chelsea and exit at the southern tip. The Whitney’s former New York home, the Marcel Breuer designed building on Madison, will be leased by The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
- Don’t miss Frank Stella: A Retrospective, on view at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, now in its final month until 7 February 2016