Jasper’s Dilemma (Frank Stella)


The “dilemma” posed, as presented here by Caroline Jones,  is between the “seduction of the spectrum against the rigors of the grey scale,” between the spectrum of motley life versus the life of the mind, squared spirals radiating out from and into the two center fields of the painting. The two parts or aspects of the one single painting, Frank Stella’s Jasper’s Dilemma, (1962) are connected by the white line that runs up the middle of the painting and blends into the wall. A close look shows a large diamond shape in the center connecting the two halves into one. I agree with Jones’s estimation of the two halves, only adding that it is at the center of the two figures that the grey composition seems to hold together.

About zjb

Zachary Braiterman is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. His specialization is modern Jewish thought and philosophical aesthetics. http://religion.syr.edu
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