My frequent meditations on the work of Frank Stella come out of my deep interest in it, however, it’s important to realize that he hasn’t worked in a vacuum, and many other artists have made valuable contributions, opening up the same possibilities. This print by Judy Pfaff has its own look, and its own repertoire of forms, but clearly does much the same thing as Stella’s prints, which proves that the collage/construction idiom
has a lot of scope. In its treatment of the image edge and framing edge, maybe the most interesting aspect, it anticipates Stella’s prints of the early nineties. I remember when Pfaff was a name to conjure with, although I haven’t heard much of her since the eighties, which may be simply my own ignorance. She was important for bringing painting into real space, for installations that were widely recognized as a new form of three-dimensional painting—a precursor of both Katherina Grosse and Sarah Sze. I always thought of them
as room filling installations, but, as this piece shows, she also worked off the wall into relief. In comparison to Stella’s Moby Dick works, for example, much less portable. An artist who deserves more attention. Her use of striped disks is particularly interesting.