Frank Stella, American artist and printmaker, stated “What painting(s) want more than anything else in the world is working space. Space to grow and expand into, pictorial space that is capable of direction and movement, pictorial space that encourages unlimited orientation and extension. Paintings do not want to be confined by boundaries of edge and surface.”
The De Young Museum in San Francisco currently has an exhibit of Frank Stella’s work. This is a fantastic display of color, shape, form and dimension. Stella’s traditional works flow into the three dimensional pieces that immediately draw visitors in to a place of wonder. Stella captures simplicity and complexity all in one breath and stroke of color.
One can’t help but think about diversity of people on this planet when standing next to the diversity of colors in a Stella work. Perhaps try translating the above Stella quote to…”What people want more than anything else in the world is space. Space to grow and expand, space that is capable of direction and movement, space that encourages unlimited orientation and extension.” And perhaps even, “space that is not confined by the boundaries of our edges”.
Art is a great instructor and Stella’s art is a particularly wise instructor as it encourages us to think about what’s possible in our communities, workplaces and families. Stella invites us into a space where there are no boundaries just opportunities to grow.
What would your workplace be like if you embraced this theme of expansion? How would your family feel if the edges had unlimited space to grow? How would we connect as citizens of the world if we had unlimited orientation towards each other?
What do you feel and see in the expansive boundaries of a Stella painting?