Review: Vibrant new portrait of artist Helen Frankenthaler

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“Fierce Poise: Helen Frankenthaler and 1950s New York,” by Alexander Nemerov (Penguin Press)

There are doorstop biographies, and then there are appreciations. Alexander Nemerov has taken the latter approach in “Fierce Poise,” his vibrant, sympathetic portrait of Helen Frankenthaler. It focuses on 11 consequential days in the 1950s, the decade …