Voice Choices

Frank Stella

by

Upon entering Marianne Boesky’s first, smaller gallery, you encounter Creutzwald (1992), a roughly chest-high amalgam of buckled metal planes entwined by snarled steel tendrils. This is contrasted with K. 150 (2014) — brightly colored plastic coils colonizing a milky, perforated panel. The conceptual whipsaw between oxidized decay and chromatic effulgence is typical of 78-year-old Frank Stella’s lifelong search for abstract manifestations of intellectual metaphors: from references to Nazi propaganda in his Black Paintings of the 1950s to the current “K Series,” which is based on the works of an 18th-century Italian composer. Through the narrow opening into the main gallery, you glimpse a huge farrago of ragged metal that simultaneously expands and crumples: Fishkill (1995). Lurking around the corner, the billowing polished aluminum expanse of Puffed Star (2014) exerts a sudden tug of aesthetic gravity, as if its youthful, silvery energy is pulling apart the scattershot mass of the dying sun across the room. With Stella, as with the eternal background buzz of the Big Bang, the noise is every bit as important as the signal.

Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m. Starts: Dec. 2. Continues through Dec. 20, 2014