Visual Artist Sam Gilliam Died At 88 Who Was He And What Happened To Him Wiki Biography

American painter and visual artist Sam Gilliam passed away. Pace Gallery, which represented him since 2019, shared the saddening piece of news. According to them, the artist took his last breath at the age of 88. Ever since the announcement of the news, many people are coming forward and are paying heartfelt tributes to Gilliam. Everyone is shocked to learn about his sudden demise. The colorist’s well-wishers have flooded social media with tributary posts and condolence messages. Here is what we know about him and his death. Scroll below to get the details.

Visual Artist Sam Gilliam Died At 88 Who Was He And What Happened To Him Wiki Biography

The seventh of eight children, Gilliam was born in Tupelo, Mississippi, in 1933. He was the product of a railroad worker father and a stay-at-home mother. Sam earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Louisville. Later, in 1962, he went to Washington, D.C., where he remained for the remainder of his life and set up shop. DC artist rose to prominence as a key figure in the 1950s movement known as the Washington Color School, which placed an emphasis on expansive fields of color.

Who Was Sam Gilliam?

Gilliam was one of the most important and influential abstract visual artists in the US. His desire to liberate his paintings from the constraints of canvases and frames was intense. Instead, in his Drape paintings from the 1960s, he used unstretched canvases that were either suspended from ceilings or fastened to walls in massive cascades. His mixed-media artwork, part painting, the part sculpture was never hung the same way twice when it was displayed in an exhibition.

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The artist stated in a 2018 Morning Edition profile that the goal of his Drape work was “to develop the idea of movement into shapes” and that he was inspired by clothesline-hung clothing. A 28-foot public work created by Gilliam and unveiled in 2016 was the result of a commission from the then-new Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Some of the most renowned museums in the world feature his work. It includes the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Tate Modern in London, and the Musée d’Art Moderne in Paris. Additionally, Gilliam had solo exhibitions at the Whitney Museum, the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C. The U.S. State Department’s Medal of Arts Lifetime Achievement Award was given to him in 2015.


By Harsh

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