“Frank Stella: A Retrospective” Travels to San Francisco

Frank Stella, Harran II, 1967. Image courtesy of Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

The exhibition opens tomorrow at the de Young museum

The following feature appears in the November 2016 issue of NYLON.

“I think any critic, curator, or collector would be very hard-pressed to come up with a postwar artist working today who has been more important, not only in terms of the evolution of modern art but in particular abstraction, than Frank Stella,” says Tim Burgard, curator of “Frank Stella: A Retrospective,” on view this month at the de Young Museum in San Francisco. And it’s easy to see why: Stella, who was born in Massachusetts and has been living and working in New York for almost 60 years, had his first major retrospective displayed at New York’s Museum of Modern Art in 1970, when he was only 33. He has been championed as a leading force in minimalist painting, and credited with keeping the art of painting alive during a time when artists like Donald Judd and Tony Smith were bringing minimalist sculpture to the forefront of the art world. “I think that he feels a very strong responsibility not only to his own work, but also to his medium,” says Burgard.

The retrospective has traveled across the country over the past year. First shown at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York last October, the exhibition then made an appearance at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Texas, and this month reaches its final destination at the de Young Museum, where 57 works will be displayed, with some features that were not present at the New York and Fort Worth locations. “You have color choices, you have lighting choices,” explains Burgard, “but we felt more of an obligation as an educational institution to present an essentially chronological installation of his works.” 

One surprising thread that connects Stella’s works is his use of technology. “Stella is constantly evolving, transforming, and moving on to new ideas and new forms of expression, and I really have enormous respect for that,” says Burgard. “Rather than resting on his previous accomplishments, he’s always trying new things.” He cites the artist’s works from the early ‘70s (known as the Polish Village series) in particular. “He utilized computer design to help fabricate the low-relief constructions, which are almost like interlocking jigsaw-puzzle pieces,” the curator continues. “But for Stella, technology is very much a means to an end.”

Another theme present in Stella’s work is his connection to New York, and the period of deconstruction and rebuilding of lower Manhattan that he witnessed in the ‘60s and ‘70s. “I think he has absorbed his environment into his works, and he’s absorbed that urban aesthetic into his work,” says Burgard, noting that this is true of Stella’s pieces that contain rectilinear and architectural elements. “While [Stella’s paintings] are first and foremost about modern art and the history of abstraction, in an interesting way he could be seen as a quintessential New York painter, and that’s not often how he’s thought about, the way you may think of an artist like Keith Haring,” Burgard says.

As the curator points out, East Coast art institutions have always followed more traditional art historical practices, which Stella is inherently a part of. “On the one hand,” he mentions, “paying respect to that tradition makes it hard to innovate. And I think California, for better or worse, has always had this sort of reputation as a place where you go to reinvent yourself, you know?” We do. And while it might be hard to envision Stella driving down the Pacific Coast Highway in a convertible, we can’t wait to see what California audiences have to say about his works. 

Screenshot via Youtube

While the song should serve as a reminder to your exes

Just a day after dropping new single "Nunya," featuring Dom Kennedy, Kehlani has released the winter-wonderland visuals to go along with. The singer, NYLON November cover star, and mother-to-be rocks some of the best winter 'fits I've seen in a while, including a glorious puffer jacket that could double as a down comforter that I absolutely need in my life right now.

Kehlani is clearly living her best life up in some snow-filled forest hideaway, vibing on the beach at sunset and sipping on something bubbly as she coolly reminds nosy exes that who she's with is "nunya business." There's not much of a story line (unlike her recent "Nights Like This" video); the main takeaway is that Kehlani is busy dancing through a forest, missing no one and chilling amongst people who are clearly not the subjects of the song.

Kehlani is only two short months away from bringing baby Adeya into the world, who she thanked for helping her get through the video process. "Shot that 7 months pregnant in da snow..." Kehlani wrote on Twitter, adding, "thank u baby for da motivation, mommy was FROZE."

Even from the womb, Adeya has been hustling hard alongside her momma. Twitter user @ODtheMC pointed out that this is already her second music video appearance, and she's not even been born.

Get some mulled wine ready and escape into Kehlani's winter getaway, below. Stay tuned for her forthcoming mixtape, While We Wait, out on February 22.

Kehlani - Nunya (feat. Dom Kennedy) [Official Music Video]



Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Images.

As in Black Panther Political Party leader

It's been a running joke that the Black parents/grandparents of millennials were really confused about all of the Black Panther hoopla ahead of its 2018 release. Many of them were anticipating a movie about members of the Black Panther Political Party and didn't know who the hell T'Challa was. Well, those people are about to have their moment, and we're about to have another one.

Variety is reporting that Fred Hampton, the Black Panther leader at the center of the upcoming biopic Jesus Was My Homeboy, could be played by none other than Daniel Kaluuya. Apparently, he is in negotiations for the role. And he's not the only Black Panther alum in the mix. The Warner Bros. project is being produced by Black Panther director, Ryan Coogler. The same article reports that the forever swoon-worthy Lakeith Stanfield—who appeared with Kaluuya in Jordan Peele's Get Out—is also in negotiations, to play William O'Neal, an FBI informant who infiltrated the Black Panther Party.

Coogler and Charles King are putting together a dream cast to tell a difficult story. Hampton was killed by the Chicago Police Department, while his pregnant girlfriend lay next to him, thanks in part to information they received from O'Neal. Whenever it's out, I strongly recommend having Black Panther queued up as a palate cleanser.