Sam Francis

Sam Francis

Sam Francis was born in San Matteo, a city lying south of San Francisco USA in 1923 and entered local University of Berkeley and chose a major in botanic, then in psychology and medicine. The Second World War caused the interruption of his studies and in 1943 he enlisted in Military Aeronautics as a pilot. Due to an accident Francis remained hospitalized for three years and dedicated himself to painting, considering such activity as a sort of therapy. After having gone back to Berkeley, he took a degree in painting and history of art. In 1950 he moved to Paris, where his first personal exhibition was held two years later at Galerie du Dragon. In 1955 he displayed his works for the first time in a museum at Kunsthalle in Bern. In 1959 he went to live in New York and in 1962 in Santa Monica, California. In spite of his continuous travelling, he had some studies in Europe and Japan. In 1984 he founded Lapis Press which can be classified among the most important publishers specialized in visual arts and philosophy, and created a foundation dedicated to research and supportive of alternative medicine. Francis lived in California until his death in 1994. In 1993 the artist generously donated to MOCA ten paintings created between 1951 and 1992. He began his relationship with the Museum as the founder of the Board of Governors and remained a member until 1989. Moreover, as a member of the committee for the construction of the new MOCA building, he focused the general attention on works by Arata Isozaki. Sam Francis’s works are shattered in the collections of museums all over the world: The Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, The Museum of Modern Art in New York, The National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C., The Museum of Modern Art in Shiga, Japan, and Tate Gallery in London. Several mural paintings of his are commissioned in Tokyo, Basel, Berlin, New York and San Francisco.

Official website of Sam Francis

Artworks