Art: Stella and the Painted Bird

In Fort Worth, a major show

There are some artists whose precocity almost seems a curse, and one of them is Frank Stella, a wiry, taciturn American of Sicilian descent who turns 42 next month but whose work must seem (to younger painters) to have been around forever. For ten years, from the moment in 1960 when his black pinstripe paintings were exhibited at Manhattan's Castelli Gallery, Stella's work was one of the main points around which the critical debates of that logorrheic decade precipitated themselves.

He was completely a child of abstract art. "Whatever...

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