FRANK STELLA "POLAR CO-ORDINATES V" LITHOGRAPH, 1980
Frank Stella (b. 1936) is one of our favorite 20th century artists- he helped topple Abstract Expressionism and ushered in a new era of art making. His aesthetic encouraged Minimalism, Hard-edge abstraction, Op Art and even Conceptual art.
In 1970 the Museum of Modern Art, New York presented a retrospective of Stella's work making him the youngest artist at the time (and still to this day!) to receive such a distinction.
Stella began printmaking in 1967 - and it immediately became an essential part of his practice. This work is from the "Polar Co-ordinates for Ronnie Peterson" print series from 1980.
The title references graph paper and the name of a friend, a Swedish auto racer who tragically died during the Grand Prix in Monza in 1978 - the year Stella began crafting this print series. Stella previously referenced auto racing through his minimally circuitous "Race Track" paintings in the early '70s. (Throughout his life, Stella has been a fan of fast cars. In 1984 he was arrested in his silver Ferrari for speeding)
"Polar Co-ordinates" are derived from Stella's famed "Saskatchewan Series" paintings completed between 1967-1970. This particular print has the signature shape of the Flin Flon paintings, which were a modification of his Protractor series. The composition is divided into four semi-circular arcs forming a geometric flower motif, reminiscent of a four leaf clover. Stella breathes color and movement into the traditional diagrams of polar co-ordinates graph paper, using the grind pattern to swirl around and net this floral form.
The Saskatchewan paintings contained flat-painted, bold color-blocking, while the works in this portfolio showcase colors mixed together and scribbled over one another with colorful, swirling grid backgrounds. This is the result of numerous layers of lithography and screen-printing, and marks the first time for Stella where his prints become new works, free of their original source material, even in name.
The multi-step process used to create these prints brings together varying density of colors, different shapes, calligraphic scribbles, and the polar grid leading to a disintegration of form.
This disintegration marks the series as an essential part of his oeuvre where elements from his past works, which relied on creating form with color-blocking, are juxtaposed with the unravelling of form and color. Stella's works over the succeeding decade shift from minimalist, hard-edged geometric abstraction to riotous baroque works exploding beyond the canvas. One could say that these prints are the bridge between Stella's minimalist/geometric phase of his career and the hyper-colorful baroque "later work".
Additional images available on request.
Questions about this piece? Contact us or call +1.416.704.1720
'Polar Co-ordinates V'
Signed, numbered and dated by the artist
From an edition of 100
Lithograph, screenprint, and letterpress on Arches Cover paper
Published by Petersburg Press, New York
Framed with plexiglass
Very good condition
Literature: Richard Axsom and Leah Kolb (2016), The Prints of Frank Stella: A Catalogue Raisonné 1967-1982, Axsom, pg. 210.
- Where does the inventory ship from?
Our inventory is divided between New York and Toronto.
- Where do you ship to?
We can ship anywhere. Typically when we ship within North America we prefer to use FedEx or DHL. To Europe, Asia and beyond we generally use DHL.
- How much does it cost to ship?
For shipments within North America, we typically charge a flat rate fee. Many items on our site will list the rate. For shipping outside of North America, we can easily provide a quote and will look for the most efficient and economical option.
Most of the items on our site can be easily shipped internationally.
Occasionally we will recommend that an artwork be removed from its frame for shipping. Larger framed works are typically framed with plexiglass. We export over 80% of what we sell, so we are comfortable shipping anywhere.
- Are there additional taxes or fees?
When a work is valued above $2,500 usd there is a possibility of tax of 0.35%, but this is applied sporadically. There can similarly be an additional fee for customs brokerage and this can range from $20 - $65. US Taxes, duties and customs brokerage are not included in our flat rate shipping. However most of our shipments to the US enter without any additional fees.
- Do you provide a certificate of authenticity?
Yes, we guarantee everything we sell. We can provide both a digital and printed version of our certificate of authenticity.
What is your return policy?
- Caviar20 wants you to be 100% satisfied with your purchase. We have a 7 day no-questions full refund return policy for your purchase. Shipping charges are non-refundable. Return shipping is the responsibility of the customer. After 8 days returns are given a credit note. There is no expiration for our credit notes.
- What payment methods do you accept?
Canadian clients are welcomed and encouraged to pay with interac.