8/29/2006

Frank Stella

89 comments:

Painter said...

Frank Stella, 1967

no-where-man said...

ack. worst sensibility ever.

kalm james said...

Frank Stella, the quintessential New York painter of the 1960s. This piece, from his “Protractor” series was a huge leap from the “black stripe” paintings that brought him initial recognition. Talk about early retrospectives, Stell was given one at the MoMA at age 33 in 1970 (no provincial “art center” that). Love him or hate him he’s one of the most influential American abstractionists of the last half century.

He’s actually been a sculptor for the last fifteen or twenty years, and I wasn’t crazy about the stuff he showed recently at Paul Kasmin, huge assemblages of black composite fiber and brushed stainless-steal, (the actual painting was bad, not good bad but “bad” bad) interesting expenditure of funds though.

This cat knew how to work the "system."

Cooky Blaha said...

Oh yeah. One of the first to introduce the concept of the dead end. After that head on collision he resorted to ikebana monstrosities which devour and piss and shit in their twinkly viscera, greeting us, taunting us as we enter so many billion dollar lobbies. Who else hit the brick wall of the dead end head first? Lets name them and judge them..........................................................................

actually on 2nd thought some of his computer assisted shit *PiNg!: kinda looks like post graffiti neo abstraction B Mcgee and Forcefield and Paperrad except its not trying to be obnoxious, at least I think he isnt........ yeah its just really too honest and lonely to fly......................how can one recover from that trauma its just inescapable and so tragic lord help us

zipthwung said...

These days I make my own sun. You know earth doesnt produce gravity, Earth is just a side effect.

So too Does Stella shine.

Stell influenced the embossed look of the microsoft windows interface.

I thought it would be nice to have a coffee table book of corporate lobbys - complete with doorman next to the art. Someone should do that, I'd buy it. SOmebody with a good GERMAN lense.

Its all about the edgesEDGES!

H.R. Giger's Harkonnen chairs are now being manufactured in the U.S.A. by the
atelier of Miles & Generalis in Philadelphia directly under the supervision
Giger and the co-ordination of Leslie Barany, H.R. Giger's agent. They are
not, and have never been, available for license to any outside company. This
is Giger's second project with this talented team whose client list includes
such internationally famed artist as Frank Stella, Jeff Koons, Larry Bell,
Isami Noguchi, Mikhail Chemiakin. Among their corporate clients are Time
Warner, Universal Studios, MGM Grand Casino, The National Galery, The
Philadelphia Museum, and the U.S. Government, Department of Navy.

Currently, the only Harkonnen Chair readily available is the regular, black,
fiberglass model, without the the crown of triple skulls and arm-rests.

Sturm und Drang!

Martin said...

this is beautiful.. i like stella most when he is richard pettibone'd.

zipthwung said...

Corporate culture rocks.
Are we on the same page? Have you been onboarded?

Synopses & Reviews
Publisher Comments:
Taking a fresh look at the art world of the 1960s, Caroline Jones argues that far from the countercultural stance associated with the decade, the artists she examines--including Stella, Warhol, and Smithson--identified their work with postwar industry and corporate culture. Drawing on extensive interviews with artists and their assistants as well as close readings of artworks, Jones explains that much of the major work of the 1960s was compelling precisely because it was central to the visual and economic culture of its time.

no-where-man said...

i dig the sensibility of corporate culture not to mention, health-care, paid vacation days, travel and education budget, partys and ice-cream day.

yum.

gotta pay the piper.

stella is not very corporate to me - more trust fund.

zipthwung said...

In the eighteenth century it was often convenient to regard man as a clockwork automaton. In the nineteenth century, with Newtonian physics pretty well assimilated and a lot of work in thermodynamics going on, man was looked on as a heat engine, about 40 per cent efficient. Now in the twentieth century, with nuclear and subatomic physics a going thing, man had become something which absorbs X-rays, gamma rays and
neutrons.

kelli said...

I want ice cream day. Who else is a dead end?

zipthwung said...

Ice cream is an illusion covering the desert of the real. I had tobacco ice cream - it was art. I should have/would have eaten a bunch of it but it was like swallowing chew spit. So much of art is like that. I think its called anti-esthetic or something. Thats what makes stella a reflection of puritanism? Or is it supposed to be beautifull? Sublime?

Squeal pig, squeal.

closeuup said...

Stella has probably the worst color sense of any sucessful artist I can think of--this thing (as all his stuff) is hideous.

I don't think there is one piece that Painter has posted since Ive been here, that wouldn't be accepted to a corporate lobby. Not one.

kelli said...

His color pallette is reminiscent of the eras he worked in. His 80's stuff is very Bill Cosby sweater MTV. It is hard to transcend your era and maybe better to embody it.

closeuup said...

If you want your paintings to look like Bill Cosby's sweater then be my guest. Alexander Julian in the MOMA?

kelli said...

It's strange that they remind me of ugly, dated things in a way that Warhol and Rosenquist don't. Isn't abstraction supposed to be transcendent?

closeuup said...

Any kind of painting can be transcendent, but the transcendence is effected thru its abstract qualities.

zipthwung said...

To win the cold war the united states had to eliminate content from its art. It was necessary belt tightening that alowed the art to fly faster, farther and with more efficiency.

Conform or be jet wash.

But artists had good drugs - I had a teacher who did geometric abstraction and some doctor dude in Jersey had liquid mescaline....

Mushrooms, acid, pot...

If I were a gallery Id pump in oxygen. You hear me Gagosian? Oxygen.

zipthwung said...

I've never seen a garish tropical fish

why is that?

brent hallard said...

...these signs were about full-frontal force and reality. That's hardly transcendent. The European stuff was that other word. I studied that on muzak.

Remind me of Gap t-shirts. I walk past that store every morning--that's pretty relevant and today--recycled. I prefer the NTT Docomo flagship, same colors but more separated into the Judd concept each with a tiny television--Judd with a tiny television--the ultimate in any date of furniture.

You know how to tell an abstract art?
Ask it?
says 'yes, I am!', burn it.
Sez 'nothing' burn it because not answering to the call is... in history, can not be and will not be... tolerated!!

I love stereotypes and the people who breed 'em :)

Cooky Blaha said...

I thought of more artist who hit the wall and you know what some actually survived. You can name a lot of the dead end conceptualists like Kosuth and Levine, what have you, thats obvious. I'd say Baldessari hit the wall and he actually went on to do good work; I got a soft spot for late Baldessari even though one could construe it as textbook po-mo; whatever it still looks cool.
I hate to pull her card cause she did do some valid important shit but Adrian Piper really has been spinning in circles after her crash and burn..to have deconstructed shit so efficiently and then end up doing those but ugly collages is such a cop-out, but hey what'd you do?

yoga power
--and thats a good one!

docomo's cool I'm all about the MUJI color palette myself, they even sell grey cookies

brent hallard said...

grey cookies right, cooki, muji--grey spells the recycle jobs--right next to gap across from D like we live in a cultural muesum every day and who would know it, who would know?

no-where-man said...

ice cream day is Wed. i am not kidding.

Mothra said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Mothra said...

So Blank Frank decided to live beyond his early existentialist endgame and became Bland Frank... I still like the early paintings. oh bondage! Ellsworth Kelly and Robert Mangold wished they could be as unambiguous, and plenty of contemporary artists quote him. Why bring the snark so hard? Reactionary reaction to canonization? Are we that well-trained?

zipthwung said...

I really dont feel what Stella means to people. Not snarky. Just dont get it, although I think I get what people wanted out of it - what you can get with Stockholm syndrome (thats snarky). Sieg heil. Oh yeah it deconstructs itself, but not really - the lines on Empire Architecture remind me of the pinstripes more than the suit. Panopticon of banal beaurocrats. Kaleidescope Nazis dividing up life with a paint splatter for humanity.

Not of this time dude. Im not looking for transcendence - I decided to come back to earth and guide "people of wealth" to a brighter future filled with vibrant colors and shapes. Im talking about Stella here - or my fantasy self. God I'd love to be the go-to person for interior decorators, architects, facist dictators.

Not that familiar with adrian piper, neither, which I know calls my omniscience into question, problematizes it, so to speak.

But I am wary of these low rent Pynchons, cutting and pasting experience into fiction. Next thing you know you dont know where you are.

Cooky Blaha said...

kelli in answer to your "funny in art" question I thought of John Currin, Bea and what have you. That painting is pretty boring but its funny. I go for his early wizard series..............but not the Thanksgiving stuff

no-where-man said...

i thought that whole txt at the whitney was forced.

"You see what you know! "

kalm james said...

Talk about players, Stella knew how to make nice to the New York art world. He single-handedly reestablished the reputation of Ad Reinhardt, making him the Godfather of Minimalism, curated early shows featuring the minimalist like Judd, Andre and Smithson, was married to one of the most powerful art critics of the era, took part in the major debates about the state of abstraction, and had a shit load of art made. He was a one man art corporation, Stella Inc. he could hang billionaires on the walls of his lobby. He donated a major”Tropical Bird” piece to Dartmouth, huge honey-combed aluminum thing with glitter, the whole smear. Damn thing is so big they couldn’t move it, so they just built a wall around it, tear it down every ten years when they want to look at it then put it back up.

kelli said...

Cooky thanks and Kalm James thanks for reminding us how it's done. I'm sitting here trying not to make inflammatory remarks and celebrating ice cream day early.My grandfather used to golf with a man who worked for Stella and managed to get his contact info. When I moved to NY he would call every week and ask "did Stella call yet?'

wade said...
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wade said...

pettibone'd stella

I like the black squares, still remember my greek art prof. comparing it to this pot--don't know what his point was.

Here is one of his lesser known proteges, completing a stella/lewitt wall drawing, attire by the young ellsworth

no-where-man said...

y would anyone not want to make inflammatory remarks? i say go for it

gazinia said...

Of course his colors are of his time: weren't they already-mixed mystery-color "as is" cans of paint he bought in the hardware store? Or was that just his earlier method? Didn't he randomly choose the placement of the colors too? Very conceptual for better or worse.

And as for his talks on abstract art (I'm thinking of the 80s Harvard talks) his solution for where to go after the "deadend" of abstract painting (that he created for himself) was to go 3-di instead of the more logical 2-di illusionistic space as in Al Held's paintings. He is very good at taking his own problems, concerns and solutions and making them appear to be the answer to the whole art world's problems. That is certainly a lesson for young artists.

teamtruth said...

no-where-man:

"y would anyone not want to make inflammatory remarks? i say go for it"

Cross said...

Stella has gone on to make huge contributions to printmaking and to sculpture, but like most artists when they are young and fabulous, he had to go through some of this "dues paying" to the art powers first. Some of you who are slamming the hardest might ask yourselves two questions: first, What were your artworks like 35 or 40 years ago... and second, What will they be like in another 40 years.

zipthwung said...

Conceptual art is great. Its was shadow cabinet in the parliament, opposite the market party.

I like that story. Except apparently its not a two party system like I read about in college.

Thanks for the pics wade - normally I hate art jokes, but the idea that these dudes (or just the artist) are having a private conversation on a party line - thats absolutely contagious. Im eating memes for breakfast.

I like to think experience gets coded, and thats why each generation appears so dogmatic - the codes become heavy chains of meaning, like DNA.

Much of that translates in cultures. Its fluid, and decodeable.

Take the morons reading David Sedaris or Zadie Smith or what have you - its all just brain-porn.
But it keeps you normal. Like reading the NYpost. I offered the NYT to someone and they said its too big.
I heard that!

But when you have nationless states like the Taliban, or perhaps the art world (jet set culture at least), the codes become more, shall we say, esoteric than Page Six.

Can you feel the goose bumps?

Im drinking my coffee hot.

zipthwung said...

Conceptual art is great. Its was shadow cabinet in the parliament, opposite the market party.

I like that story. Except apparently its not a two party system like I read about in college.

Thanks for the pics wade - normally I hate art jokes, but the idea that these dudes (or just the artist) are having a private conversation on a party line - thats absolutely contagious. Im eating memes for breakfast.

I like to think experience gets coded, and thats why each generation appears so dogmatic - the codes become heavy chains of meaning, like DNA.

Much of that translates in cultures. Its fluid, and decodeable.

Take the morons reading David Sedaris or Zadie Smith or what have you - its all just brain-porn.
But it keeps you normal. Like reading the NYpost. I offered the NYT to someone and they said its too big.
I heard that!

But when you have nationless states like the Taliban, or perhaps the art world (jet set culture at least), the codes become more, shall we say, esoteric than Page Six.

Can you feel the goose bumps?

Im drinking my coffee hot.

zipthwung said...

oh and KJ - thanks for the sumamry. Ive heard these dudes called power brokers because they gladhand well and have charisma.

Charisma is awesome. It reflects on the observer and makes everyone feel like a million bucks.

Existential endgames , though. WOW - I was watching COSMOS with Carl Sagan. What if the universe is bounded? It must be because there is order to chaos, which is just a reflection of the limits it is reaching. We call those limits "strange attractors" and they create these cool diagrams that look like infinity symbols or moibius strips.

What if the universe is contained within itself? Thats a paradox, but I cant see an infinite regression of reflected "all possible worlds" - I think its more that you are allways inside yourself as well as stepping over yourself.


Reactionary is another good word - I looked it up.
It means conservative, in a way. The art world is reactionary, a standing wave if you will.

People like the surf metaphor - Raymond pettibon uses that, fuck him RObert Longo too - but his arent that interesting in and of themeselves - I hope they are part of a larger conversation I am not privy too.

Too manyt waves, too many interference patterns. Identity is a sticky wicket.

zipthwung said...

"What will they be like in another 40 years."


I just read that. Are you quoting?

kelli said...

Zip I usually appreciate you but back the fuck off David Sedaris. I'm quite serious. Do I seem like I'm joking.

zipthwung said...

Art world is gearing up - hope to see some curved space time.

Ice cream=metaphor for entropy as well as social dynamics.

Ice cream truck=Pluto

Am I right? Gee I hope so.

flesheater99 said...

did someone say ice cream?! pistachio please...and I'll take science and nature for green pie.

1967!?.

kelli said...

Yeah this ice cream isn't bad. And why don't I ever hear the Mr. Softee song in Chelsea.

zipthwung said...

Kelli, you are so white.
go listen to :this american life" and sigh to yourself "oh its so true!"
Man that dude gives self depreciation a bad name.
If david sedaris was any cuter hed be a button nosed hallmark card.
His humor is about as biting as a detoothed chihuhua.
David Sedaris is to Dilbert...

Thats right, comfort food for disafected liberal yuppies.
Im going back to sparta.

no-where-man said...

ice cream = literal.

The Scoop on the Final Ice Cream Break of the Season

invites you to join your colleauges for a sweet treat and a refreshing break

time 3-4 pm

Place
Glass conference room
on the 3rd floor
(opposite West elevators)

Enjoy!

if your in midtown stop on by.

kelli said...

Zip my mom is mixed race but I shop at J. Crew because I am already funny looking and don't need funny clothes. And the larger question is why is self deprecation amusing in Sedaris or in general? No-Where man planning to drop by and annoy people by taking about old episodes of Friends and my rash.

no-where-man said...

feel free - we talk more about Film Previews and partys, Software, Mac vs Pc, Art Openings and what the blow is cut with these days and sites like this don't believe the "office space" hype. its a good life.

zipthwung said...

Satire is tragedy plus time. You give it enough time, the public, the reviewers will allow you to satirize it. Which is rather ridiculous, when you think about it.
Lenny Bruce

A lot of people say to me, "Why did you kill Christ?" "I dunno... it was one of those parties, got out of hand, you know." "We killed him because he didn't want to become a doctor, that's why we killed him."
Lenny Bruce

kelli said...

This sounds good but I hate blow. Why is it so ubiquitous? I've been wondering that.

zipthwung said...

I shop at Kmart because its cheap and doesnt look too ridiculous. Fucking pleated uniforms for the proletariat. Assholes. Might as well put striping down the side. oh wait, they do.

Yeah david sedaris is allright.

zipthwung said...

Blow is good for introverts because it makes me feel like extroverts.

I like people on coke. Too bad it cost money.

kelli said...

I'm a dominant introvert INFP
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myers-Briggs_Type_Indicator

zipthwung said...

INTP to INXP

YOu hear that HR?
I know us spacey creative types arent worth shit in marketing, but fuck man, we make great mascotts in our ascotts.

Office space had a poisonous corporate culture created by one man, who brought in specialists like some dude who has no real allies in the company. No power essentially, other than that given to him. No moral authority. Morality comes from the group, I think.

Like Hitler. THe Nazis had their own moral code. Like, dont torture Arians unless they are traitors to the race. And no pistachio ice cream - its a slippery slope.

Cross said...

Zip --

No I wasn't quoting, at least not that I'm aware of. But if you read it somewhere else, well you know, "great minds...."

zipthwung said...

It was a review in NYT - 1995 or so...weird.


spencer finch

needs an editor?

closeuup said...

oooh kelli--im an INFP too. Or J. I didnt want to be too honest about my judging I guess.

Self deprecation is so amusing because there are so many people who are so full of themselves out there.

If only they sold blow at kmart.

no-where-man said...

the blow seems to make the kids sleepy these days, - guess one smack the borders are unguarded at afghanistan guess 2 fentanyl.. yum chocolate.

kelli said...

Closeup that's funny depending on the test I am sometimes a J too. Citibank gave me a Meyers Briggs indicator when I had a day job there so I thought they should not have been surprised when I photocopied altered timesheets when they tried to short people's overtime. No-Where Man I think you have a more pleasant day job but I also think you have video editing and computer skills I don't have.
I think the art world would be more fun if we switched to marijuana and went to the opera.
I still have no love for this Stella. I guess a lot of the trust fund, artist inc. remarks apply to Brice Marden too but he seems more soulful.

doug said...

Yeah Brice Marden is good for soulfulness not to mention phenomenology - meaning nature is phenomenal. I don't think that Frank Stella has anything to do with that, right?

kelli said...

They are similar in terms of career but not work. Pedigree combined with astute management.

doug said...

The career comes from having the money and therefore the time to think about shapes. But I am not sure what this had to do with ice cream (by the way I can hear a truck and I am in Chelsea!!).

This shape looks like one and a half citrus fruits.

doug said...

sometimes I justify these questions through simplification. I think about the person when I think about the arts. So one's sensibilities relate to sensible shoes and so on. So there is concern for cushioning, for the religious, the emotive, the feeling in some painters. This is not the case with Frank Stella. You agree with me on this I think.

kelli said...

I very much agree. When art is based only on ideas it turns into corporate dust when the ideas become passe. I hope Mr. Softee is not in Chelsea. That is Mr. Cone's territory.

doug said...

I can't tell who it is from the song but it was definitely a truck selling frozen treats. It must be Mr. Cone. I hate art based only ideas, it looks like this one and a half citrus fruit or unfolding pie or pie chart or whatever it is. It looks like a traffic sign for the end of humankind.

kelli said...

I think it was supposed to be a traffic sign for the end of painting but people ignored him and took a detour or two.

clement said...

I am reading, what I think is a good book, called The Painter's Eye by Maurice Grosser 1951. Trying to learn more, as always. He has an interesting point that at the beginning of the 20th Century, the subject of paintings became composition itself and the object/subject was obscured in different ways so one would focus in on what makes a painting work and this was the beginning of what we would call Modern Art. Probably obvious to most of you.

What I am wondering, weather you agree with the above or not, is what would you consider contemporary art? Is it anything goes: Concept, Figure, Subject, Non-Objective, geometric, etc, etc? or is there an over-riding theme/color/idea/technique,etc that makes paintings more modern than Modern Art? More contemporary?

I've heard some say that some painters are more contemporary. What does that mean to you?

I must admit I am, I think, pretty rooted in the mid of last century, but trying to grow.

thanks,

beadelog said...

Barbara Rose told me that Frank's first job was apartment painting in the city but he got canned because he would paint over the dried bugs in the windows. I always hated this story because I was painting her apartment and made sure the windows looked great.

brent hallard said...

Just right now we're in a crowded room full of ideas, the easiest to hear as usual is I've got the bomb! and at more close range to respond nudges the Can I bump you for a cigarette?

no-where-man said...

ENFJ

no-where-man said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
kelli said...

No Where Man I knew it! You are a total extrovert but the likeable kind who offers to help people move and cracks wise.The whole thing is based on Jung. Why are there methods of art criticism based on Lacanian and Freudian psychoanalysis but never Jung. Too Hippie? Too Joseph Campbell.

JpegCritic said...

it's cuz Discourse found jung lacking in rigor.
Freud being the Established Father- Jung being the
malformed kid who couldn't write an artist's statement
without getting all mushy. Otto Rank at least tried
to please the market. Discourse and rigor won with
the pseudo-discourse of Lacan. The joke is that
Lacan was first and foremost a Surrealist. The
least rigorous of all.

JpegCritic said...

But I like Lacan for his craaaazzzy algebra.
Kristeva cuz she was cute in her day.
And actually understood math.
Barthes cuz I have a book of his to read.
Zizek almost cuz he professes to like pop
culture, but I'm suspicious.

JpegCritic said...

Krauss! That Librarian!
Despite her age, I'll bet she's crazy in bed!

ad3pt said...

dudes, I love the fact that reading the words of artists is becoming so much like reading boring and sterile artforum
flack drivel.

give it up man, theres too many artists out there and what your making is overprocessed like television anyways.

kalm james said...

Get hip folks, Modernism is bound to the ideas of Marx, an overthrow of the established order. Stella’s formulas are equal to a “five year plan.” With a strong orthodoxy and explicitly defined goals you can not allow deviants to sidetrack the momentum. The Frankfort School crew was able to meld Marxism with Freudian pseudo–psychic mind manipulation. Study the backgrounds of the all the French Decon’s and you’ll find out their all waaaaay left. Krauss named her mag "October" as an homage to the October Revolution. Spirituality, trancendency, individuality, myth and any other overly humanistic tendencies have to be censored, unless it is derived from the “State.” The “Art World” is the last bastion of unbridled, unregulated, Wild West entrepreneurism. more Deadwood than utopia. Unless you want the guberment hornin in, you’d better get used to it.

Oh yeah, Marxists are real horn-dogs.

JpegCritic said...

ha! ...at least the lacanian ones...
...nothing creates a longing for the crown jewels
like state sponsored repression.

JpegCritic said...

didn't benjamin end his life with jewels
in his heart, drugs in his mouth,
and the state on his trail?

JpegCritic said...

petit objet a.

JpegCritic said...

...considering (mouth = nourishment)
and not that (b == L) ,
b being declared before L....
But let L=b just for M's sake....

JpegCritic said...

say what you will..
Deadwood was nothing but
a [sexual] fantasy produced because
of the state. To go back to jung,
the yin to the yang.

JpegCritic said...

...but consisering jungian-yin-yang shizwizzle,
it all comes back to freudian patircide.

JpegCritic said...

shizwizzle. i'm blabbering.

JpegCritic said...

back to stella and freud this looks like a dick to me.

JpegCritic said...

back to krauss, this looks like an inverted dick to me.

JpegCritic said...

Back to Frankfurt, this looks like a coopted dick.

kelli said...

pretty sweet critique but this dick lacks aura.

SisterRye said...

more of an aureole.

kalm james said...

What's Dick without Jane?