Sam Gilliam - Editions & Works on Paper New York Thursday, October 22, 2020 | Phillips

Create your first list.

Select an existing list or create a new list to share and manage lots you follow.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Sam first began experimenting with printmaking in the 1970s, first with his friend Lou Stoval and then, during the 1980s and onward, with Bill Weege at the Jones Road Press and then with Steve Anderson at Vermillion Press in Minneapolis.

    In John Beardsley's introduction to Sam Gilliam: Recent Monoprints (Philadelphia: Brandy Wine Workshop, Printed Image Gallery, 1993) notes that "Weege encouraged him to freely to combine media and techniques, 'to work in the area between painting and prints, sculpture and prints" (p. 8) and goes on to add, "There is almost no way to reconstruct the creation of these prints, so many were the means. They began with handmade paper, sometimes two or three sheets combined. Some of these were taken from the traditional printer's inventory: woodblock, drawn and routed with circular shapes… But others were more unorthodox: objects discovered at a foundry were freely use, including a variety of stencils and even metal shavings. The shapes of still other found objects were embossed directly into the paper…Gilliam then took these prints back to his studio, cut them apart again and stitched them back together—much as he does with his paintings—using heavy nylon filament. Both before and after this collaging, he raked acrylic and gel across the prints; he then printed them yet again. This is Gilliam the printmaker at his most impulsive, even whimsical—the organizing geometry has been reduced to just an arc here, a rectangle there; drawing is loose, and colors are vibrant. In all there is a brightness and freshness…that can be directly attributed to their exuberant technique" (pp. 9-19). Or as Bill Weege would say, "Just do it."



Monotype with handmade paper and stitching in colors, the full sheet.
S. 14 x 20 1/2 in. (35.6 x 52.1 cm)
Signed, titled, dated and annotated 'A/P' in pencil (an artist's proof, the edition was 37), unframed.

$2,000 - 3,000 

Sold for $4,410

Contact Specialist

Editions & Works on Paper

New York Auction 21 - 22 October 2020