Due to a plane crash, Francis was hospitalised from a young age which left him with severe back injuries and a long period spent in hospital; here he was fascinated by the reflections and colours that were created in his white hospital room. This is portrayed in his works with the white background and splattered blotches of colour which could be reminiscent of these early memories of his hospital room. In the present work, Francis explores the interplay between light and colour which are enhanced by the materials used. Many of his peers worked with the figurative subject matter unlike Francis who was more interested in the composition, the attributes of his painterly medium and space. From the 1950s, Francis began to completely take over the picture plan, allowing the viewer to feel the sense of freedom that he got from painting. By the mid-1980s, his application of paint had become thicker and more resolute and the works from this period resonate with colour which is apparent in the present work.
Francis recreated the physical act of painting for himself using a wide range of materials, mixing his own colours to create his own highly saturated pigments. His longtime assistant, Dan Cytron recalls; “Sam could afford any pigments he wanted and he wanted colours which were rare or obscure, such as real cadmium, or cobalt-based colors, not available to the general public” (Dan Cytron cited in: Tom Learner, Rachel Ribenc and Aneta Zebala, ‘Notes on Sam Francis’ Painting Methods and Materials in Two Grid Paintings’, in: Debra Burchett-Lere, Ed., Sam Francis: Catalogue Raisonné of Canvas and Panel Paintings, 1946-1994, Oakland 2011, p. 3). Indeed, Untitled (SF86-813) draws the viewer into another spatial system entirely, pushing beyond what has been done before and into a realm of his own.
Please call 1-800-555-5555 to order a print catalog for this sale.
Online Registration to Bid is Closed for this Sale. Would you like to watch the live sale?Watch Live Sale