Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Frank Stella Exotic Bird Series

Frank Stella -born in Massachusetts 1936
-received his AB in History from Princeton University 1958
-studied art history with eminent art historian William Seitz.
-after graduation moved to New York

-his early influences were Jackson Pollack and Franz Kline (abstract expressionists)

-Stella is one of the most well-regarded post-war artists working today.

Jackson Pollack (ACTION PAINTINGS)

Earlier Jackson Pollack

Franz Kline
Franz Kline

-Stella felt the abstract expressionists used an over abundance of paint and stressed movement, emotion and personal experience. 

-He became interested in artists who were dealing with "flatter" surfaces such as Barnett Newman and Jasper Johns (Target paintings).

-He grew to view pictures as objects rather than pictures representing something of the physical and emotional world.  "A Flat surface with paint on it and nothing more."

Barnett Newman

Barnett Newman

Jasper Johns (Target Paintings)

Jasper Johns

Jasper Johns (flag paintings-encaustic)

-From 1958-1960 Stella began his series of "Black Paintings"  and achieved almost immediate success.  Critics called him the "enfant terrible"or "bad boy"

-The black paintings were painted on unprimed canvas with pinstripes in between the black bands of color.  These paintings were referencing Jasper Johns flag paintings of the time.
-Along with this series he began to use copper and aluminum paint with regular lines of color.  He also began using irregular formats like an L, N, U, and T-shapes. These shaped canvases emphasize his idea of paintings as objects.
-1960 he was selected by the Museum of Modern Art in NY for an exhibtion called "the Sixteen Americans"

Protractor Series in Late 1960's

-protractor is used for mathmatics and designs (object used to produce art as objects)

French Curve and (Exotic Bird Series, Paintings and Sculptures) Late l970's and early 1980's


-Stella was early influenced by Baroque artist Caravaggio (1571-1610)




What are the similarities in Barnett Newman's and Frank Stella's paintings (in accordance with Stella's philosophies in his early career?

How does Jasper Johns' flag painting relate to Stella's stripes paintings?

Stella's paintings became more expressive later in life.  How do they relate to  his early influences of Jackson Pollack's Drip paintings?

What are the relationships between Caravaggio's Medussa and Stella Mixed-Media Sculpture?

In your opinion how does Stella's installation relate to our current environmental trends?  How does it represent the urban environment and the concerns for ecology and saving the earth?

Caravaggio's "Narcissus"
If Carravaggio was an artist today what kind of messages would he relay in these two paintings?
(Narcissus and Bachus)