The Easel

Archives: Peter Schjeldahl

14th May 2024

The indestructible art of Frank Stella

Stella was devoted to abstraction but not abstract expressionism. He felt the latter presumed its own spiritual greatness. So, he started making austere black striped paintings – among the first minimalist works – and found instant acclaim. That style, along with many others, was discarded in a career full of reinvention. Despite being seen as an art world “god”, Stella’s advice about his own work was to avoid interpretation, “what you see is what you see.” An obituary is here and a light hearted interview with Stella is here.