May 9, 2018

“Frank Stella Unbound” at PU Art Museum

“THE CABIN, AHAB, AND STARBUCK”: “Frank Stella Unbound: Literature and Printmaking,” at the Princeton University Art Museum from May 19 to September 23, focuses on the role of literature in Frank Stella’s innovative printmaking. The exhibit commemorates the 60th reunion of Stella, PU Class of 1958.

Between 1984 and 1999, American artist Frank Stella executed four groundbreaking print series — each taking its inspiration from a literary text: Had Gadya, Italian Folktales, Moby-Dick, and the Dictionary of Imaginary Places. In the process, his creative practice evolved to create prints of unprecedented scale and complexity, through which he both achieved a technical and expressive milestone in fine-art printmaking and transformed his visual language in all media.

Frank Stella Unbound: Literature and Printmaking” will present 41 prints from Stella’s four literary print series, alongside historical editions of their literary catalysts. This exhibition focuses on the critical role that world literature played in Stella’s powerful exploration of the print medium and will be on view at the Princeton University Art Museum, from May 19 through Sept. 23.

“The Museum is honored to be the first to closely examine Frank Stella’s richly evocative relationship with literature on the auspicious occasion of his 60th reunion at Princeton,” said James Steward, Nancy A. Nasher — David J. Haemisegger, Class of 1976, director. “To experience these vibrant and life-affirming works on paper allows us to more fully grasp the artist’s rigorous process and his extraordinary range of interests.”

Frank Stella is celebrated worldwide for his decades-long investigations of expressive abstraction in both two — and three — dimensional media. Both his early hard-edged work from the late 1950s and 1960s and his later efforts to break the flat plane of paintings are among the most groundbreaking moments in the art of the past 50 years. His work has been exhibited and collected by major museums around the world.

The Princeton University Art Museum is located at the heart of the Princeton campus. Admission is free. Museum hours are Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Sunday 12 to 5 p.m.