Oct 04, 2018 - Sale 2487

Sale 2487 - Lot 124

Price Realized: $ 100,000
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 80,000 - $ 120,000
SAM GILLIAM (1933 - )
Blood Legacy.

Acrylic, gel medium and canvas collage on shaped cotton canvas, 1983. Approximately 1371x1625 mm; 54x64 inches, with beveled edges. Signed, titled and dated in ink, verso.

Provenance: acquired directly from the artist; private collection, Atlanta.

This large painting is an excellent example of Sam Gilliam's richly collaged canvases of the early 1980s - a tour-de-force of his hybrid technique. This elaborate geometric composition combines a canvas patchwork, each with raked or splattered acrylic media in a dizzying palette of colors, within a shaped canvas. This same year, Sam Gilliam also painted his Rondo series of paintings which were hung together in the rotunda of the Corcoran Gallery of Art in his 1983 solo exhibition Modern Painters at the Corcoran: Sam Gilliam.

These elaborately constructed collages of canvas grew out of Gilliams' 1977-79 black series of textured painting in which he first used collage elements. By the early 1980s, Gilliam made increasingly complex collages with more challenging color combinations to construct these paintings. Jonathan Binstock described Gilliam's ambitious pursuit over this decade as "the desire for more perplexing yet resolved compositional and chromatic structure". Binstock p. 118.