Frank Stella, pioneer of minimalist art, dies at 87

Frank Stella, the renowned American artist known for his significant contributions to minimalist and abstract art, has passed away at the age of 87, per Stella’s iconic works have left an indelible mark on the art world, challenging traditional notions of form and representation.

One of Stella’s most notable pieces, “Inflated Star and Wooden Star,” which debuted at the Royal Academy in London in 2015, exemplifies his innovative approach to art. The massive stars, one in polished aluminium and the other in unvarnished teak, stood at an impressive 7 metres in all dimensions. Stella’s work often raised more questions than it answered, inviting viewers to ponder the relationship between form, material, and meaning.

Throughout his illustrious career, Stella explored the concept of the star form, creating hundreds of pieces that can be found in galleries and sculpture parks around the world. Despite his prolific use of the star motif, Stella adamantly refused to consider it his signature style, emphasising the diversity of his artistic expression.

Frank Stella in front of one of his works at Wolfsburg’s art museum, in Germany, 2012/

Born in Malden, Massachusetts, in 1936, Stella’s artistic journey began with his early experimentation with household paints and brushes. His “Copper Paintings” and “Benjamin Moore” series garnered early acclaim, earning him a place among the most influential artists of his generation.

Stella’s work evolved over the decades, transitioning from two-dimensional paintings to three-dimensional sculptures. His exploration of form, material, and space pushed the boundaries of artistic expression, earning him widespread recognition and acclaim.

In 2009, Stella was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama, cementing his legacy as one of the most influential artists of the 20th and 21st centuries.

Frank Stella is survived by his wife, Harriet McGurk, five children, and five grandchildren. His innovative spirit and groundbreaking work will continue to inspire generations of artists to come.

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