Abstract Sculptures of DC: Prinz Friedrich von Homburg, Ein Schauspiel, 3X

This sculpture is the largest work by leading abstract artist Frank Stella.

The National Gallery of Art is one of the premier art institutions in the world, with works by numerous great artists within its collections. The Prince of Homburg sculpture, as it is informally called, is no exception. Its creator, Frank Stella, is one of the foremost abstract sculptors in the United States, and this sculpture was the largest piece he’d ever completed. Stella, 40-feet wide and a massive 10 tons, was commissioned by the National Gallery of Art, and it does not disappoint.

The sculpture’s composition of fiberglass, aluminum, stainless steel, and carbon fiber all combine to create its giant tangle of shapes and materials. It uses curved, oval-shaped metal sheets that link together, with other jagged and spiked sheets jutting out; finally, the support beams add a layer of thin, straight rods that hold everything inside and together. The entire composition feels like it could move like a tornado, twisting and turning on itself. Completed in 2001, the sculpture’s 19th century inspiration, a play titled The Prince of Homburg, details the tumultuous journey of a prince of the same name as he confronts war, love, and politics. The play inspired many works by Stella, and the Prince of Homburg sculpture stands as the largest.

Part of Pennsylvania Avenue Historic Site and National Mall Historic District.

This site is a stop on the Abstract Sculptures of DC tour.



National Gallery of Art East Building, 4th St and Constitution Ave NW, 20565