18 Items in this Learning Collection
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Accession Number


Sam Francis

Object Creation Date

Medium & Support
color lithograph on paper

25 3/4 x 19 15/16 in. (65.4 x 50.5 cm);32 1/8 x 26 1/8 in. (81.44 x 66.2 cm);25 13/16 x 19 7/8 in. (65.41 x 50.48 cm)

Credit Line
Museum Purchase

Label copy
A World War II fighter pilot who was injured in a crash landing, Sam Francis began his career as an artist when he took up painting as a form of therapy. Prior to his time in the Army Air Corps, Francis studied botany, psychology, and medicine. His knowledge of these areas is reflected in his work, much of which evokes the cells of an organism. Untitled makes excellent use of intense primary colors. Francis’s use of vibrant red hues has often been attributed to his experience in viewing blood samples through a laboratory microscope. The circular, free-floating blue shapes resemble jellyfish or enlarged versions of amorphous microscopic life forms.
Jamina Ramírez, Intern for Modern and Contemporary Art, on the occasion of the exhibition The New York School: Abstract Expressionism and Beyond, July 20, 2002 – January 19, 2002

Primary Object Classification

Collection Area
Modern and Contemporary

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modern and contemporary art

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(Part of: History of Medicine - American Association of Historians of Medicine (AAHM))
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(Part of: Resources Made by Isabel Engel)
C / C Teaching Guide : Perspectives on Health and Health Care 
(Part of: Resources Made by Isabel Engel)
Health Care and Ambiguity
(Part of 2 Learning Collections)
Poetry / Art / Therapy / Health
(Part of: W21 National Clinician Scholars Program)

& Author Notes

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