Art: The Higher Criticism

In a three-column box, the New York Herald Tribune last week apologized for its able, veteran art critic. Emily Genauer. In reviewing an exhibition of 16 Americans at the Museum of Modern Art, she had labeled the work of Frank Stella "unspeakably boring." Stella, she wrote, "paints huge black canvases carefully lined with white pin stripes and calls the results very accurately 'stripe-painting.' "

Not so, Stella protested in an urgent letter to the editor: "My paintings are what I do, not what I omit. In fact I paint black stripes about 2½ inches wide. Therefore the unpainted white spaces between...

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