SAM FRANCIS (1923-1994)

Sulfer Water, 1967
Lithograph trial proof
39 ½ x 30 ¼ inches

American artist Sam Francis is one of the main leaders of the twentieth century American Abstract Expressionism.  Originally trained in medicine and psychology, Francis turned to painting and completed his BA and MA at the University of California.  He was greatly influenced by French, Japanese art and Abstract Expressionism, particularly by the works of Mark Rothko, Clyfford Still and Jackson Pollock. Francis’ abstract painting age dominated by white and bordered by brilliant, often primary hues like red, blue and yellow transparent oil applied in a loose, vigorous manner, thus creating clusters of overlaid geometric forms00 such as rectangles, triangles, and concentric circles.  Eventually these more rigid structures gave way to looser configurations sometimes of snake-like forms with web-like patterns, reflecting his interest in “ceaseless instability.” Over the years, Francis traveled throughout Europe and Japan, working for long periods of time in studios in Paris, New York, and Tokyo and exhibiting widely throughout the world.