miami

Frank Stella

New Museum

FRANK STELLA IS TOO MUCH. His art and career have always been outsize in every sense, from the less-than-zero “Black Paintings” of 1959–60 to the giant, Day-Glo late-’60s “Protractor” series and wild relief paintings of the ’70s and ’80s. Each time he realizes a personal breakthrough in his work, he expects to pull the world along with him, to effect a paradigm shift in modernism. Such audacity has bagged him no less than two full-scale MOMA retrospectives, but the work has met with diminishing returns and increasing skepticism. By his third retrospective, the take-no-prisoners rubric under which he and curator Bonnie Clearwater classed his new output—“Changing the Rules”—may have amounted to a folie à deux.

This was a really big show: forty-foot paintings, giant hunk-of-metal sculptures, a large-scale model for a forthcoming bandshell in downtown Miami; even the smaller sculptures doubled

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