Sam Gilliam


Sam Gilliam (1933-2022) is one of America’s most prominent and innovative abstract painters.

Initially associated with the color-field painters in Washington DC, Gilliam has had a lengthy and dynamic career incorporating groundbreaking techniques into his practice throughout his ever-evolving career.
Born in Mississippi, Gilliam studied at the University of Louisville and later relocated to Washington and worked among artists such as Thomas Downing, Morris Louis and Kenneth Noland.
The artist’s practice has constantly evolved, at times abruptly, in style and its preference of material. While consistent in his expressive and gestural use of colour, Gilliam has worked with painted canvas, watercolours, and prints.

‚ÄúCorner‚ÄĚ, created during Gilliam‚Äôs early exploration with watercolors, exemplifies the artist‚Äôs ephemeral dream-like compositions, where swaths of color are focused on light and dark tones from folding and staining the surface.¬†¬†

Click here to see another example of Gilliam's experimentation with watercolor paper from the same series.

The light colors of this work, the artist states, ‚Äútend not to defy or resist the wall at all‚Ķ [they are] like working with the actual space itself.‚ÄĚ

In July of 2018 the Kunstmuseum Basel (Switzerland) hosted the first major European retrospective of the artist focusing on Gilliam’s critical years of 1967- 1973. 

In the last four years, Gilliam’s work has enjoyed a significant renaissance across North America and Europe. 

Questions about this artwork? Contact us or call +1.416.704.1720  

Watercolor and acrylic on fiberglass paper

Signed, titled and dated by artist on frame verso

18"H 12.75"W (work)

26"H 20.5"W (framed)

USA, 1967

Very good condition 

Original period frame (with updated plexiglass glazing, backing and archival framing materials)


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