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RIP Sam Gilliam




One of the most important and influential abstract visual artists in the U.S. has died: Sam Gilliam, a great colorist whose work influenced generations of artists, was 88 years old. His death was announced by the Pace Gallery, which had represented him since 2019.


Gilliam was born in Tupelo, Miss., in 1933 as the seventh child of eight, born to a father who worked on the railroad and a homemaking mother. He attended the University of Louisville for both bachelor's and master's degrees, but in 1962 moved to Washington, D.C., where he lived and had his studio for the rest of his life. He became one of the leading artists of the Washington Color School — a 1950s movement that emphasized large fields of color.

RIP Sam Gilliam

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