Skip to main content

Sam Gilliam papers, 1957-1989

Gilliam, Sam, 1933-


Collection Information

Size: 7.9 linear feet

Summary: The papers of contemporary Color Field painter and educator Sam Gilliam measure 7.9 linear feet and date from 1957 to 1989. The papers include biographical material, correspondence, writings, business records, printed material, subject files, a scrapbook, artwork, and photographic material that document Gilliam's life beginning as a student, through to his teaching, professorial, and artistic career based in Washington D.C. The collection highlights Gilliam's close involvement with the art institutions, racial politics, and artistic innovation taking place in 1960s through 1980s America, specifically in Washington D.C., and showcases the planning and creation of the large scale three-dimensional paintings Gilliam is best known for as a member of the Washington Color School of painting.

Biographical/Historical Note

Sam Gilliam (1933- ) is an African-American artist based in Washington, D.C. Associated with the Washington Color School of painting.


The Sam Gilliam papers were donated to the Archives of American Art by Sam Gilliam in 1989.