Sam Francis | American, 1923 – 1994

Samuel Lewis Francis was an American painter and printmaker. He received both his BA and MA degrees from University of California, Berkeley, where he studied art, botany, medicine and psychology. Francis was initially influenced by the work of abstract expressionists such as Mark Rothko, Arshile Gorky and Clyfford Still. He later became loosely associated with a second generation of abstract expressionists, including Joan Mitchell and Helen Frankenthaler, who were increasingly interested in the expressive use of color. Because Francis worked and exhibited in the United States, Europe and Asia, he is credited with helping secure international recognition for postwar American painting. His work has been seen most often and best understood in Europe and Japan. In 1991, he was elected into the National Academy of Design as an Associate member, and became a full Academician in 1994. Paintings by Sam Francis can be found in numerous international museum collections including those of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, The Kunstmuseum Basel, the Idemitsu Museum of Arts, Tokyo, and the Centre Pompidou-Musee National d’Art Moderne, Paris.