Sam Francis, Untitled, 1977

Artist: Sam Francis (1923 - 1994)
Title:Untitled, 1977
Medium:Monotype with oil, watercolor and embossing on handmade paper.
Image Size:27 3/4 in x 22 in (70.5 cm x 55.9 cm)
Sheet Size:27 3/4 in x 22 in (70.5 cm x 55.9 cm)
Edition:This is a unique and original work.
Signature:This work is hand-signed by Sam Francis (San Mateo, 1923- Santa Monica, 1994) in pencil in the lower left.
Condition:This work is in excellent condition.
ID #w-8313

Historical Description

 Sam Francis Untitled, 1977 is elegant in its simplicity; framing the edge of the paper are several geometric forms of varying sizes and space. The blue watercolor that creates the geometric outlines that dance and bleed into the paper, disappearing into the vast white of the background. Pollack style paint droplets are draped across the negative space of the paper, curated to appear haphazard and chaotically dispersed while mediating a delicate balance of colors. At first glance, the painterly marks seem wild and uncontrolled, but become more defined and clearer as they circle around the space, bursting in contrast against the white background of the handmade paper. Invested in the negative space, Francis spoke about how “Color is born of the interpenetration of light and dark”, perhaps indicating how the white space on a canvas expresses the darkness of paint.

Japanese art critic, Yoshiyaki Tono, spoke on the emptiness in Sam’s painting: “Samuel Lewis Francis saw white when he was born. It was an eternally fresh death. All the frustrated dreams were concealed secrets as negatives behind that white perfection. You could have dreamed of any image looking over this pond of possibilities and a kind of white eroticism with floating white revived as the blank arena for the dialogue in colors.” Allowing color to dominate the work with such a masterful eye, Francis subserves the prominence of contrast in his art, displaying the fragile boundary between his interpretation of light and dark. Though color prevails through all his works, the persistence of this floating white manifests a deeper meaner, an insistence on the impermanence of life, death, and the everything in between.

Created in 1977, this work is a Monotype with oil, watercolor and embossing on handmade paper that is hand-signed by Sam Francis (San Mateo, 1923- Santa Monica, 1994) in pencil in the left hand margin. This work is a unique and original work.

Catalogue Raisonné & COA:
Sam Francis Untitled, 1977 is fully documented and referenced in the below catalogue raisonnés and texts (copies will be enclosed as added documentation with the invoices that will accompany the sale of the work).

  1. Certificate of Authenticity will accompany this artwork.

About the Framing:
Framed to museum-grade, conservation standards, Sam Francis Untitled, 1977 is presented in a complementary moulding and optical grade Plexiglas.